CINCINNATI — Tire Discounters President Jamie Ward is reaching out to other tire dealers and automotive retailers in Ohio to get behind a new state bill due to take effect July 1 that prohibits the installation of unsafe used tires.
Mr. Ward, who also is a board member of the Ohio Tire & Automotive Association, said, "This bill will prevent countless injuries and fatalities caused by unsafe tires, other states should follow Ohio's lead to prohibit the sale and installation of unsafe used tires, and I invite all tire retailers to support this cause."
Mr. Ward is speaking out at this time to take advantage of publicity surrounding National Tire Safety Week, which runs May 20-27.
The Ohio bill defines unsafe as anything under 2/32nds-inch tread depth.
OTAA President Joe Flynn added: "The OTAA was successful in working with the Ohio legislature because we had tremendous support from our retail partners. To further our mission to remove unsafe used tires from the nation's roads we need more retailers to lead the charge in their home states".
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that tires at or below 2/32nds-inch tread depth are three times more likely to be involved in a crash than tires with sufficient tread depth.
"I recognize that there is a market for used tires," Mr. Ward said, "however, there's a line that should be drawn to distinguish good used tires versus used tires that are unsafe. We successfully drew that line with law in Ohio and we need to join as an industry to replicate similar legislation across the country."
The bill — which was supported by the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association — further defines an unsafe used tire as one which has damage that exposes inner components such as body plies and steel belts; has improper repairs; or is missing its Department of Transportation identification number.
The bill was sponsored by Ohio Rep. Frank LaRose, who now is Ohio's Secretary of State.