The component which allows a passenger or truck tire to be operated without a tube is referred to as the tire’s bead. It is a bundle of wires wrapped together and utilized inside the rubber which contacts the rim.  They are made in various configurations depending on the manufacturer.  A bead can fail during the mounting and inflation process with devastating consequences.  When a  bead failure occurs, there is a sudden loss of pressure which can turn the tire wheel assembly into a projectile injuring or killing the mechanic.

Beads may be defectively manufactured resulting in failure at low inflation pressures.  Also, a bead can “hang up” during the mounting and inflation process. When a bead fails, it usually does so at its “splice” which is where the two ends meet.  
Tire/rim mismatch can result in bead failure.  Due to the design of 16.5 inch rims, a 16 inch tire can pass over the flange of the rim with some effort.  16.5 rims are uncommon today and some mechanics lack familiarity with the potential mismatch which can be deadly.  If the mismatch is not detected and inflation is commenced, the bead may fail during the inflation process at pressures within the maximum recommended inflation pressure.  In mismatch cases, the rim manufacturer as well as the manufacturer of the tire changing machine are potential defendants.   

If you, your family, or your friends are injured as a result of a tire failure, it is important to call an attorney experienced in investigating tire failure.  These cases can be complex and expensive and should be handled by an attorney who has experience in this specialty.