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Source of unusual tire deterioration

I moved a set of steers to the back. The one that was worn the most has developed an odd patch of unusual tire wear, almost as if it has been attacked by a chemical that is breaking down the rubber. It looks dry rotted but is soft and crumbles off when you rub it.

It's not terribly urgent as the tire is nearly at the end of it's life, but i've never seen anything like this.

Pics of the tire in question:

Any ideas?

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That almost looks like someone has held a torch to that spot on the tire. I would run it by your local tire dealer and show it to them. If your looking for warranty it's got to go through them anyway.''italic text''

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Difficult to tell from the photos but this could resemble petroleum or chemical product damage. Oil, diesel and antifreeze are common culprits. Brake skid is a possibility as well. Definitely have your dealer look at it to avoid further damage or an out-of-service condition.

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paul wood will be eternally grateful.
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