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NHTSA Releases Final Tire
Pressure Monitoring Rule
All passenger cars will have tire pressure
monitoring systems beginning with the 2006 model year according
to a new motor vehicle safety standard by the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA.)
The regulation will require that manufacturers install a system
that can detect when one or more of the vehicles tires are
25 percent or more below the recommended inflation pressure.
Phase-in of the new regulation will begin Sept. 1, 2005. All new
4-wheeled vehicles weighing 10,000 pounds or less must be
equipped with the monitoring system by the 2008 model year.
According to NHTSA, under-inflated tires can adversely affect
fuel economy, lead to skidding and loss of control and
hydroplaning on wet surfaces. It can also increase stopping
distance and the likelihood of tire failures.
NHTSA estimates that about 120 lives a year will be saved when
all new vehicles are equipped with the tire pressure monitoring
systems. In addition, consumers should see improved fuel economy
and increased tire life. The manufacturers average cost per
vehicle is estimated to be between $48.44 and $69.89, depending
on the technology used.
The tire pressure monitoring system was required by Congress when
it enacted the Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability,
and Documentation (TREAD) Act in 2000. The new regulation can be
found at: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/rulings/TPMSfinalrule.6/TPMSfinalrule.6.html