While Mr. Lieu did not reveal the timing or exact content of the consumer education provisions to TIA, he did tell the association that the first phase would address tire maintenance and update existing information on NHTSA's consumer website, SaferCar.gov.
The second phase would concentrate on educating consumers about the new rolling resistance, treadwear and traction ratings through fact sheets and other materials, Mr. Lieu said.
"NHTSA plans on working with the Tire Industry Association prior to finalizing these materials to ensure that the content is accurate and comprehensible," he said. The ratings program will be implemented within six months of the final rule, he added.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 mandated a government standard to rate and label tires for fuel efficiency. NHTSA issued the final rule March 30, 2010, but left the labeling and consumer information portions for further rulemaking. Proposals on both provisions have yet to appear.
Since the promulgation of the final rule, TIA has promoted itself as the logical third-party entity to administer the consumer information portion of the standard.