The Causal Relationship between Wheel Rim Gouging Forces on Roadway Surfaces and Rollover Crashes
There has been a general consensus in the scientific literature that a rim gouging, not scraping, into a roadway surface generates very high forces which can cause a vehicle to overturn in some situations. However, a paper published in 2004 attempts to minimize the forces created during wheel rim gouging and the effect on vehicle rollover. This paper relied largely on heavily filtered lateral acceleration data and discounted additional test runs by the authors and NHTSA that did not support the supposed conclusions. This paper will discuss the effect of rim gouging using accepted scientific methods, including full vehicle testing where vehicle accelerations were measured during actual rim gouging events and static testing of side forces exerted by wheels mounted on a moving test fixture. The data analyzed in this paper clearly shows that forces created by rim gouges on pavement can be thousands of Newtons and can contribute to vehicle rollover.