COLUMBIANA, Ohio—It's a place where, in strict Darwinian terms, only the strong survive.
The Firestone Test Center, operated by Nashville, Tenn.-based Bridgestone/Firestone Inc., offers what the company calls the world's only facility dedicated exclusively to testing farm tires. Covering 350 acres of farmland in Columbiana, Ohio, the site puts agricultural tires through their paces 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The tire maker said tractor and implement tires are "abused and punished" to ensure they can perform under the most extreme conditions. The test facility also is responsible for developing new tread designs and rubber compounds; updating Firestone dealers through training seminars on new advancements in tire technology and the evolving needs of the farming industry; and maximizing performance by working with equipment manufacturers.