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Drivers who get stuck in snow, mud, and sand will spin the vehicle's tires in order to try and make enough traction to get out. In situations like these, tire speed ratings do not reflect an accurate safety margin. Never spin your tires faster than 35mph. Spinning tires can break apart and explode above those speeds, regardless of what your tire speed rating says. The cause? Centrifugal force. It can tear apart a tire at speeds higher than 35mph, often in an explosive manner. Pay close attention to the speedometer when trying to get out of a snow or slush rut, and make sure no one stands behind the vehicle as you attempt to get out. Tire speed ratings are not calculated under such conditions, and therefore don't apply. Use the “under 35mph” rule for maximum safety.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|