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Update: Tire aging bill is 'dead for the year'

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) reports Maryland legislation HB 729, the tire aging bill, is 'dead for the year.'

Dan Zielinski, senior vice president of public affairs, reports the Maryland House of Delegates Economic Matters Committee's Consumer Protection and Commercial Law Subcommittee has placed the bill on summer study. Consequently, the Maryland Senate version of the bill, SB 940, was withdrawn.

The RMA and the Tire Industry Association (TIA) joined forces to fight the bill, which the RMA said would force retailers and manufacturers to issue factually inaccurate statements about tire performance and create impractical consumer notification requirements that have no documented safety benefit (see TIA, RMA: Maryland tire aging bill hurts dealers).

Roy Littlefield, executive vice president of TIA, said, "We are appreciative that thoughtful legislatures saw that this proposal was not the answer to promoting the safety of our roadways." He went on to thank the coalition partners and everyone who came out to testify and reach out to their respective legislatures in Maryland to put the facts straight and not let hyperbole implement bad law.

(For more background, see also, “TIA tries to rally Maryland tire dealers against bill,”)

TIA, in conjunction with the RMA, the Chesapeake Automotive Business Association (CABA) and numerous tire retailers, retreaders and manufacturers, came together to form a coalition that came to the Maryland state capital in Annapolis numerous times to testify and educate legislatures on real facts about tire aging.

Kevin Rohlwing, TIA's senior vice president of training, said "that It is inaccurate and misleading to suggest that 'tires deteriorate with age' as Maryland HB 729 stated and even more irresponsible to cite the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as the source for this premise."

The official statement from NHTSA on tire aging at is, "The structural integrity of a tire can degrade over an extended period of time." NHTSA also goes on to say that, "Tire aging is generally not an issue with vehicles that are driven regularly.""

TIA recommends that "public education, regular tire monitoring by drivers and periodic inspections by trained tire technicians is what keeps everyones' tires performing at peak performance and our roadways safe for our families and commerce."


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