Possible lead wheel weight ban too premature, says EPA

March 11, 2005

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials say it's too early to tell if the group will call for a ban on lead wheel weights. "We don't know whether we have a problem or what we're going to do about it," EPA representative Janette Peterson told moderntiredealer.com this morning.

The EPA is trying to determine if lead wheel weights pose a threat to the environment. If they do, "there are a million options open to us," says Peterson. "A ban would be the most extreme."

The agency is partially basing its investigation on a five-year-old study that claimed to monitor the rate at which lead wheel weights fall off vehicles and are ground into dust. "We also understand that the European Union has already banned lead weights."

"We're looking for sound science to back (a possible ban) up," says Tire Industry Association Director of Government Affairs Becky MacDicken. "We're waiting for the data."