U.S. Auto Regulators To Tighten Tire-Safety Regulations

By Agence France-Presse U.S. regulators have drawn up regulations that would mandate high-tech changes to automobile tire safety as part of the continuing fallout from the Firestone tire fiasco, officials said July 14. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has sent the White House draft regulations mandating the installation of tire-pressure-monitoring warning systems on all vehicles. NHTSA spokesman Rae Tyson would not comment on how soon the regulation might go into force once White House officials have had a chance to review it. The move stems in part from the Ford Motor Co./Firestone tire recall of 2000 and 2001 when the No. 2 U.S. automaker was obliged to replace millions of Firestone tires implicated in hundreds of rollover accidents. U.S. authorities concluded that the accidents were due to tires that suffered tread separation at highway speeds, in part because they were under-inflated. Several automakers have already installed high-tech pressure-monitoring systems on certain high-end and luxury vehicles. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2004

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