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NHTSA finalizes final tire labeling rule

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has decided to modify and clarify its tire labeling rule based on petitions from industry organizations such as the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA). Among the changes: retreads will not be included.

The petitions addressed various aspects of the "final" tire labeling and vehicle labeling requirements, including Tire Identification Number (TIN) placement. Among the changes that NHTSA will incorporate into the ruling are:

* Retread tires are to be excluded from the requirement that a partial TIN be on the opposite sidewall from the full TIN.

* A barcode or identification number will be permitted on the vehicle placard and label in a specified location.

* Tire load indications "XL" or "Reinforced" will be permitted to be placed on the vehicle and label.

* The "compact spare tire" designation will be modified to be "spare tire" or "spare" on the vehicle placard and label.

* Use of red ink on the placard and label is clarified and allowance is made for the use of either black text on a yellow background or yellow text on a black back ground where currently specified.

NHTSA adopted its "final" tire labeling rule in November 2002. For the complete ruling, which addresses all industry recommendations, check out the Federal Register. Click here for the full text.

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