Thursday, January 7, 2010

Volume 3, Number 22: A Hidden Danger

(Note: I originally posted this entry on July 17, 2008 on my Yahoo! GeoCities blog.)

I just came across a scary report on The president of my local Pontiac Grand Prix club brought it to my attention. It's a segment from ABC's 20/20 newsmagazine program in which Brian Ross reports on tires that various dealers sell as brand new, and consumers assume them to be new, but in reality, they may already be a few years old (except that many people don't know about a date code stamped on the tire that can tell them the age of the tire). According to Ross, research and tests have shown that tires can become dangerous after six years, regardless of how many miles they have on them.

Needless to say, I now feel the need to check all of my tires to see just how old they are.

That said, I am disgusted with Corporate America's increasing disregard for the consumer, especially where matters like consumer safety and giving them what they paid for are concerned. Previous to watching this report, I assumed (as many undoubtedly did) that anytime I bought new tires, they would indeed be brand new, not 4 or 6 years old. And it's not earth-shattering revelation that rubber loses elasticity with age--ever try re-using an old rubber band, only to have it snap on you? Point being, these tire manufacturers should be recalling tires that have not been sold a certain period of time after the date on the tire (using the 6-year recommendation used in Great Britain as an initial guideline). But they don't, because they know such a measure would cut into their profits big time.

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