Some CH plate holders and Fuego owners may need to consider this; may have been done befor but anyway.
WASHINGTON - A consumer safety group is petitioning the federal government to require easy-to-read "born-on" dates for car and truck tires, citing 50 crashes resulting in 37 fatalities caused by older tires with very little wear and tear.
As part of a petition sent Friday to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, SRS Inc., a Massachusetts auto-safety research firm, provided analysis from crashes that involved different makes of tires by most leading manufacturers, including Continental, Dunlop, Firestone, General, Goodyear, Goodrich, Kelley, Michelin, Pirelli and Uniroyal.
According to Sean Kane, president of SRS, tire performance can start to degrade after six years - even if the tires have not been used - because of the rubber's age.
"It's an invisible hazard," Kane said. "The industry knows a lot about it, and they have recommendations that they've hidden from the public for years. Just about every other product, from food to paint, has an expiration date on it."
In many of the accidents documented by SRS, tires with little wear in the tread suddenly failed.
The Tyre Industry Council, a nonprofit organization in the United Kingdom that is funded by the tire industry and tire retailers to promote tire safety among consumers, warned in 2003 that motorists should replace tires that were more than 10 years old, regardless of wear.
The council said tire components dry with age and can separate. Anti-aging chemicals in tires are active only when a tire is in use, the council said. The council went on to say that spare tires, tires in storage or on a shelf, or tires that spend a long time on a trailer or a recreational vehicle run the risk of premature aging.
The British Rubber Manufacturers Association in 2001 issued a recommendation that "unused tyres should not be put into service if they are over 6 years old and that all tyres should be replaced after 10 years from the date of their manufacture."
Volkswagen AG, BMW AG, Toyota Motor Co.p. and Mercedes-Benz warn U.S. consumers about aging tires.
In its owner's manuals, Volkswagen warns motorists that old tires can fail in use, causing loss of vehicle control and personal injury. They are advised to replace tires after six years, regardless of wear.