Cooper recalls up to 288,000-plus tires

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is voluntarily recalling up to more than 288,000 tires in various lines for a variety of reasons.

The recalls were filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in three different groups:

* certain Cooper Trendsetter SE, Dean Alpha 365 A/S, Mastercraft A/S IV and Starfire Flite-Line IV passenger tires (up to a total of 101,582). These tires were made between Nov. 21, 2004, and July 30, 2005. They "may contain an unauthorized material in the upper sidewall region," which could lead to the formation of "small, isolated voids which could result in early loss of air pressure."

* certain Cooper Discoverer S/T, Dean Mud Terrain Radial SXT, Durango Radial XTR and Mastercraft Courser C/T tires, plus certain Mickey Thompson Dick Cepek Radial F-C II, Mesa C/T, Pro Comp Xtreme A/T and Tempra Trailcutter tires (up to a total of 183,602 units). These tires were built between Feb. 1, 2004, and Jan. 21, 2006. They "may not have adequate rubber coverage of the belt edge due to low tread gauge in the shoulder slot area. When this condition exists, it may eventually cause cracking at the base of the shoulder slots, resulting in exposed belt wire."

* size 235/35R19 XL and 245/40R20 Cooper Zeon 2XS and size 235/35R19 XL Mastercraft Avenger ZHP tires (up to a total of 3,164). These tires were made between April 25, 2004, and Feb. 12, 2005, and "may develop a scattered compression cracking condition in the innerliner stock," which can reduce the tires' ability to retain proper inflation pressure.

"We have a rigorous inspection process," a Cooper spokeswoman told today. "We never take any chances."

Cooper will notify tire owners and replace the recalled tires free of charge. It has set up a phone number, (800) 854-6288, for concerned tire owners to call.

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