Md. OSHA fins Kelly-Springfield CUMBERLAND, Md.—An administrative law judge for the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Administration has fined Kelly-Springfield Tire Co. $67,500 for withholding information on chemicals used in its now-defunct Cumberland tire plant.
Under agency regulations, employees must be granted access to exposure records from their workplaces, said Jonathan Krasnoff of the Maryland attorney general's office.
Such a request was filed in 1992 by an attorney for 64 former Kelly employees, who claimed they were exposed to toxic chemicals at the plant.
Kelly, a division of Goodyear, agreed to supply the data only if state regulators agreed to keep it confidential. The state refused and levied the fine May 19, Mr. Krasnoff said.
Kelly had code names like ``green stuff'' for chemicals used in the plant, Mr. Krasnoff said, and the state wants to know their true identities.
Mr. Krasnoff said Kelly will appeal the decision. Goodyear declined to comment on the fine.
Honda hybrid car set for fall debut
TOKYO—Honda Motor Co. Ltd. says its Insight hybrid car will get 82.3 mpg, the highest fuel economy for any mass-produced, gasoline-powered car.
The mileage figure is based on a Japanese standard that is not directly comparable to U.S. measures.
The Insight will go on sale this fall in the United States, Europe and Japan. It combines a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain with a lightweight aluminum body to achieve its fuel economy.
The Insight weighs only about 1,760 pounds, of which 356 pounds are aluminum. Honda said the body is 40 percent or more lighter than a standard steel body.
A lightweight 1-liter, three-cylinder, lean-burn gasoline engine is the main power source, while the car's electric motors provide power for extra acceleration. The electric motors are driven by a 44-pound nickel metal hydride battery.
There has been considerable speculation that the need to reduce weight on hybrid vehicles would lead them to adopt run-flat tires, thereby eliminating the need for a spare.
A Honda spokesman said the Insight would have specially designed low-rolling-resistance tires, but probably not runflats.
Haweka to market Bag-It in America
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—AM Innovations, the British maker of the ``Bag-It'' portable tire restraining device, has signed Haweka Wheel Balancing Technique USA to be its agent for North America.
Haweka, a leading maker of components for tire-balancing machinery, has an extensive sales network in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. after initial sales efforts focused on truck and bus fleets, the company said it intends to step up marketing efforts with the tire trade.
Haweka takes over marketing of the product from Harvey Brodsky Co., which has sold the Bag-It since its North American debut in 1998.
Bag-It is a polymer-coated cloth bag that is placed over a repaired tire in the field before inflating it. Should the tire explode, the bag's design dissipates the blast's energy, while containing any debris, according to the company's literature.
the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has recognized Bag-It as a ``restraining device,'' according to AM Innovations.