The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) http://www.safercar.gov/tires/index.html safety campaign isn’t going to be enough to keep consumers safe. The agency has chosen not to take a hard line on tire safety issues through regulation, and rather they are pursuing a public safety campaign in efforts to raise awareness about tire-related issues, including tire age and tread wear. In June, the agency issued a press release about the safety campaign. Although the NHTSA is offering consumers valuable information about tire safety, without the additional help of tire manufacturers and retailers, this information very does little to help keep motorists safe.
Be TireWise: The Basics
Tire Maintenance: The TireWise campaign offers consumers great information on the importance of proper tire pressure and routine maintenance like rotation, balance and alignment.
Tire Age: One of the most important but overlooked issues is tire age. Even seemingly good tires with very little tread wear can become dangerous due to age. In some cases, tires as old as six years old can be unsafe for safe roadway travel.
Purchasing Tires: The NHTSA recommends fully researching the right tires for your vehicle before going shopping. This includes getting the proper size, type and rating for your vehicle. Don’t forget to check for manufacture date so you’re not buying a retailer’s old stock. Tire age is one of the most important factors in tire safety.
Tire Registration and Recalls: Always make sure to register your new tires. In the event of a safety recall, this is how tire manufacturers can get in touch with you. You can also sign up with the NHTSA to get recall notifications.
Where the NHTSA Falls Short on Tire Safety
Critics of the NHTSA’s TireWise campaign are calling on the agency to take this issue on step further through regulation. If manufacturers aren’t required to properly notify consumers of tire age, how is the average motorist going to stay safe? Even TireWise consumers may have difficulty locating the manufacture date on certain tires. If retailers are selling aged tires from their old stock, a consumer may consider those tires “brand new.” They may not realize that the clock has been ticking on that tire’s life for a few years while it was sitting in inventory. If you or a loved one has been injured due to defective or faulty tires, contact the experienced team at Alexander Law Group, LLP today.