Dry rot. It doesn’t always show on a car tire, until you hit 70 MPH. Back in ought-7, a friend and I were headed up to Ogden in my ‘70 convertible LTD. We just barely got onto the freeway when the right rear tire literally exploded. The tires had looked good, they just passed the state inspection, but were at least 8 years old, and for most of that 8 years I owned the car it had been sitting in the garage. I had to call up my sister-in-law, Mrs. Gearhead, because my spare was flat and and I didn’t even have the bumper-jack in the trunk. Duh! Once again, one of my siblings or siblings-in-law bailed me out of a jam, I got a spare on the car, hobbled it home and immediately bought 5 new tires for the car. Good lesson, because when I bought my ‘69 4-door LTD in California and was told the tires looked good but were quite old, I budgeted for band new tires for the drive home.
Anyway, this first picture is of the bridge I was on when the tire exploded. As you can see, it was a cloudless day, perfect for a cruise in the convertible, and the sky was a beautiful blue, as it often is here in July. The second picture is of the tire that blew. As you can see, there was enough force to do damage to the car itself. Unfortunately, it’s 3 years later and I still haven’t repaired the damage.