While these tires are no longer in production, NHTSA said, some RV owners may still have the tires on their vehicle, or set aside as a spare, and do not know. NHTSA urges anyone who owns, rents or uses an RV or truck with 22.5-inch rims to ensure these tires are not in use on their vehicle.
Despite being discontinued, it is possible these tires can be found for purchase on online marketplaces, NHTSA cautioned, noting that it is illegal under federal law to sell recalled tires or other motor vehicle equipment.
NHTSA said tire failure at highway speeds can lead to serious injury or death.
The recall is the culmination of a four-year NHTSA investigation into defects of the G159 tires, based on claim and complaint data obtained from private litigation alleging that the tires installed on Class A motor homes failed in service, causing deaths or personal injuries.
NHTSA said in 2018 the Goodyear commercial tire may have caused 95 injuries or deaths dating back to the 1990s.
Following a series of conversations and meetings between Goodyear and NHTSA early this year, NHTSA requested on Feb. 22 by letter that Goodyear conduct a safety recall of the subject tires.
Goodyear filed its response to that letter on March 8, declining the request.
Goodyear said subsequently it agreed to initiate the recall due to "unusual circumstances" — the RV manufacturers that normally would have been responsible for this vehicle-specific safety communications are no longer in business.
Drivers with impacted tires are encouraged to obtain a free replacement from a Goodyear Commercial Tire & Service Network location or authorized Goodyear commercial truck tire dealer immediately.
Goodyear is offering $500 in exchange for impacted tires that have not been fitted on an RV.
In the recall notice, Goodyear told NHTSA that the motorhome manufacturers that specified the subject tires 20-plus year ago are no longer in business and it does not have access to registration data for the subject tires.
To effect the recall, Goodyear said it will publish an information bulletin describing the recall campaign on its various websites and issued to its tire service centers and independent tire dealers.
Goodyear said it will contact leading trade associations and interest groups representing recreational vehicle manufacturers, suppliers and owners, and will request that the bulletin be made available to their membership, including through publication on those organizations' websites and/or in their monthly publications.
Consumer Reports, which conducted an independent investigation in 2021 into the matter, said in comments attributed to William Wallace, associate director of safety policy, that: "While we're glad to see a recall finally take place, it took years of pressure for the company to do the right thing.
"Owners should take this recall very seriously — and so should safety regulators. It's critical to hold Goodyear accountable if it broke the law by failing to report a safety defect when required."
Consumer Reports said a year ago that a court records search showed Goodyear had settled at least 41 lawsuits stemming from G159-related crashes.
Interested parties can visit goodyearrvtires.com or goodyeartrucktires.com to locate the nearest retailer or call 866-353-3847, or contact Goodyear consumer relations at 800-592-3267 for information on the exchange process.