Is it Legal in Massachusetts to Drive on a Flat Tire?
I remember back when I was a student at Westfield State University (then Westfield State College) in Massachusetts I was going out one night with some of my college friends and unfortunately, I ended up getting a flat tire on the way to our destination.
I drove on the tire for a while before I could pull over to a safe spot. I actually ended up driving into the Walmart parking lot and parked away from other cars. In actuality, I probably should have pulled over a little sooner but I wanted to make sure I was parked in an open space. In addition, the car I had was missing its jack. Luckily I had AAA and called the service company to come out and change the tire.
As I mentioned, I feel like I drove on the flat tire longer than I should have but the situation was what it was. This got me thinking about whether there are any legality issues when driving on a flat tire.
Is it Illegal to Drive on a Flat Tire in Massachusetts?
Obviously, many people experience getting a flat tire every now and again. If you pull over and get the situation rectified right away you shouldn't run into legal trouble. Where it becomes an issue is if you take your vehicle out and knowingly travel on a flat or damaged tire. Here's what mass.gov has to say about that particular situation in Section 7Q:
No person, knowing that any tire of a motor vehicle fails to comply with regulations promulgated by the registrar relative to the minimum standards for visual and tread depth, shall operate such vehicle upon any way; and no owner of a motor vehicle, knowing that any tire of such vehicle fails to comply with such regulations, shall permit such vehicle to be so operated.
Another reason why you'll want to get that damaged tire fixed asap is that if you get into an accident, there's a very good chance that you're going to be forking over a bundle of cash if someone gets injured and you have a blown-out tire. Who wants to deal with hospital bills, medical care, physical therapy, pain, and suffering, etc.? In addition, delaying repair could cause expensive damage to your vehicle not to mention the road surface. Plus, it's flat-out dangerous. Word to the wise, keep a jack and lug wrench in your vehicle.