TRENTON, N.J. (Nov. 22, 2016) — The New Jersey Assembly has passed legislation to prohibit the sale of “unsafe” used tires that the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) — a supporter of the legislation — said pose a risk to New Jersey motorists and the public.
The vote was 72-0, according to the RMA, which listed the Tire Industry Association and the New Jersey Gas Station-C-Store-Automotive Association (NJGCA) as co-supporters.
The bill, A 3896, now goes to the New Jersey Senate for debate.
Introduced by Assemblywoman Shavonda E. Sumter, D-Paterson, the bill would impose a $500 fine for a first offense on any business that sells a tire that exhibits any one of several unsafe conditions, such as worn-out tread, visible damage or improper repairs. Subsequent violations may be enforced under the state's Consumer Fraud Act.
The bill spells out several examples of what should be considered an unsafe tire, such as:
- showing a tread depth of less than 1/16 inch measurable in any groove;
- having any damage that exposes the reinforcing plies of the tire, including any cuts, cracks, bulges, punctures, scrapes, or wear;
- having any improper repairs, including, but not limited to any repair to the sidewall or bead area of the tire; any repair made in the tread shoulder or belt edge area of the tire; any puncture that has not been sealed or patched on the inside and repaired with a cured rubber stem through the outside of the tire; or any puncture repair of damage larger than 1/4 inch;
- showing evidence of prior use of a temporary tire sealant without evidence of a subsequent proper repair;
- having a defaced or missing tire identification number;
- having inner liner or bead damage; or
- showing indication of internal separation, such as bulges or local areas of irregular tread wear.
The legislation does not ban all used tire sales, the RMA said. Instead, it targets used tires that have specific, well-established, unsafe conditions.