10 groups urge AHP passage
WASHINGTON-Ten automotive aftermarket associations have sent an open letter to the U.S. Senate, urging passage of legislation allowing the establishment of Association Health Plans.
The 10 groups include the Tire Industry Association, the Specialty Equipment Market Association, the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association and the Automotive Service Association.
Association Health Plans, or AHPs, are programs under which small business associations could pool their members to negotiate for low-cost health insurance coverage across state lines. The House of Representatives has approved AHP legislation seven times since 1995, the associations noted, but the Senate has never done so.
The House is expected to vote on its AHP bill once again in late July and is virtually certain to pass it, the associations said.
Kumho validated by U.S. Customs
FONTANA, Calif.-Kumho Tires USA Inc. recently received validation from U.S. Customs & Border Protection in the government agency's Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT).
The program is a joint initiative between government and business designed to protect global commerce from terrorism. With the program, importing businesses establish policies to enhance their own security and that of other businesses in their supply chain, Kumho said.
Fewer than 500 of C-TPAT's 8,816 member companies have been validated, the tire maker said. To become validated, Kumho representatives met with Customs officials to verify and demonstrate Kumho's supply chain security measures.
Kumho said the validation will mean faster shipping times for tire dealers as a result of fewer Customs inspections and expedited release of cargo.
``We are dedicated to continued and successful involvement in the C-TPAT program because it helps secure the U.S. borders against international terrorism and also helps ensure that Kumho tires reach our customers as quickly as possible,'' said David Hudrlik, vice president of sales and marketing for Kumho.
Nearly 900 ATV wheels recalled
WASHINGTON-About 875 aftermarket all-terrain vehicle wheels are being voluntarily recalled as the aluminum center of the wheel can come apart, separating the tire and rim unexpectedly from the ATV, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
The commission said the affected wheels are manufactured by HiPer Technology Inc. of Lawrence, Kan. Recalled wheels are 9-inch rear wheels, model number 0990 YHR. The wheels were manufactured from Feb. 15 through May.
Consumers should stop using the wheels and contact HiPer Technology at (800) 464-4737 for a free replacement wheel center or wheel repair, the agency said.
Toyo debuts FTP site for dealers
CYPRESS, Calif.-Toyo Tire (U.S.A.) Corp. has launched an FTP Web site to support its dealers, their supporting ad agencies and promoters of Toyo-sponsored events.
The new site, www.toyoad.com, provides access to both high- and-low resolution electronic product photos for print and the Internet, company news and logo art, Toyo said.
The Web site also provides photos of various cars and trucks equipped with different styles of Toyo tires including the new ultra-high performance Proxes T1R; the Proxes RA1; aggressive tires such as the Open Country M/T and Open Country A/T for light trucks and sport-utility vehicles; and the Cypress-based tire maker's complete lines for passenger cars, light trucks and commercial trucks.
In addition to the new Web site, more information about Toyo products-including vehicle fitment charts-is available at www.toyo.com.
Corky Coker wins NHRA award
BOWLING GREEN, Ky.-Corky Coker, president of Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Coker Tire Co. and chairman of the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), recently received the ``Wally'' Lifetime Achievement Award at the 3rd annual Holley NHRA Hot Rod Reunion's public reception.
The award is named for National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) founder Wally Parks. It acknowledged Mr. Coker's unrelenting commitment and dedication to the preservation and expansion of the hot-rod industry, according to SEMA.
Goodyear taps Sweeney for OTR
AKRON-Goodyear has named John Sweeney, general manager of its chemical division, to general manager for global off-the-road tires, effective June 24.
Mr. Sweeney, who was named to the chemical post last November, will be replaced by Tom Grolemund, former director of chemical product supply.
In the OTR tire post, Mr. Sweeney will look to improve OTR operations and financial performance. The business has faced an industry-wide product shortage since last year, Goodyear said.
``We must refocus on customer and end-user needs,'' Mr. Sweeney said in a statement. ``In these challenging times, demand has risen dramatically, and we must take the necessary steps to lessen the impact of this shortage on their operations.''
Mr. Sweeney joined Goodyear in 1981 and previously has worked in the tire and engineered products divisions.
SEMA Show opens online registration
DIAMOND BAR, Calif.-Registration for this year's Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show has opened online.
The annual automotive aftermarket trade show will run Nov. 1-4 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas. Attendees can register at www.semashow.com.
SEMA said growing popularity of aftermarket products and accessories has led to increased interest from people not authorized to attend. For this reason, SEMA plans to increase its screening measures to make sure only qualified professionals attend the trade-only event.
Yokohama gets race tire contract
PARIS-The Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) has chosen Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. to supply the control tire for the 2006 FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC), replacing Group Michelin, which has been the series' supplier since 2001.
The WTCC is open to production two- and four-door, four-seat touring cars powered by 2-liter, 4-, 5- or 6-cylinder engines. The 2005 championship comprises 10 two-race weekend events primarily in Europe. Marques competing this year are BMW, Alfa-Romeo, Seat (a Volkswagen brand), Chevrolet, Ford and Honda.
The FIA did not disclose terms of the contract or reasons for the change. Earlier it had put the contract up for bid.
Yokohama also will supply the control tire for the first FIA European Touring Car Cup event, a national touring car champions' race to be held Oct. 26 in Vallelunga, Italy. Organizers expect competitors from seven national touring car championships to take part.