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Guizhou Tyre Corporation; Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Guizhou Tyre, Samson, Advance

Guizhou Tyre Corporation; Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Claude H. Harris
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
February 25, 2013


[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 37 (Monday, February 25, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 12828-12829]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-04170]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2012-0073; Notice 2]


Guizhou Tyre Corporation; Grant of Petition for Decision of 
Inconsequential Noncompliance

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Grant of petition.

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SUMMARY: GTC North America, Inc., on behalf of Guizhou Tyre I/E Co. LTD 
(collectively referred to as ``GTC'') has determined that certain 
Samson and Advance brand ST trailer Tires, do not fully comply with 
paragraph S6.5(j) of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 
119, New pneumatic tires for motor vehicles with a GVWR of more than 
4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) and motorcycles. GTC has filed an 
appropriate report dated March 22, 2012, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, 
Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports.
    Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and the rule 
implementing those provisions at 49 CFR part 556, GTC has petitioned 
for an exemption from the notification and remedy requirements of 49 
U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this noncompliance is 
inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. Notice of receipt of the 
petition was published, with a 30-day public

[[Page 12829]]

comment period, on June 25, 2012 in the Federal Register (77 FR 37957). 
No comments were received. To view the petition, and all supporting 
documents log onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Web site 
at: http://www.regulations.gov/. Then follow the online search 
instructions to locate docket number ``NHTSA-2012-0073.''
    For further information on this decision contact Mr. Jack Chern, 
Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, the National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration (NHTSA), telephone (202) 366-0661, facsimile 
(202) 366-7002.
    Tires involved: Affected are approximately 4,291 size ST235/ 85R16/
14 ply Samson and Advance brand ST Trailer Tires manufactured from 
December 4, 2011 through March 31, 2012.
    Noncompliance: GTC explains that the noncompliance is that, due to 
a mold labeling error, the sidewall marking on the tires incorrectly 
identifies the load range as ``F'' when in fact it should be ``G''.

Summary of GTS's Analysis and Arguments

    GTC states that while the tire sidewall labeling incorrectly 
identifies the load range as ``F'' when in fact it should be identified 
as ``G'' it does not pose a safety issue because if a consumer followed 
the load range ``F'' designation they would actually fall below the 
actual recommended load carrying capacity. Since the tire load range 
designation ``F'' falls below the actual recommended load carrying 
capacity, the tires will perform without incident causing no safety 
issue.
    GTC also stated that all other required sidewall markings are 
present and correct.
    GTC has additionally informed NHTSA that it has stopped production 
of the subject tires, is correcting the tire molds so that the subject 
noncompliance does not occur in future production, and has notified 
dealers to discontinue selling the tires.
    In summation, GTC believes that the described noncompliance of its 
tires is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety, and that its 
petition, to exempt from providing recall notification of noncompliance 
as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118 and remedying the recall noncompliance 
as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120 should be granted.

 NHTSA Decision

    The primary safety purpose of requiring the load range label on a 
motor vehicle tire is to ensure that the end-users can select a tire 
load range appropriate for their vehicles. The absence of the vehicle 
label specifying the tire load range would likely result in an improper 
tire selection by the tire dealer or vehicle owner. In this case, GTC 
understated the load carrying capability of the tire. GTC's tire, in 
effect, is has more load carrying capability than the label would 
indicate to the end-user. The agency agrees with GTC''s rational that a 
vehicle equipped with the subject tires and loaded per the incorrect 
maximum load rating would not cause an unsafe condition, because the 
end-user would carry a lighter load than the load for which the tires 
are designed.
    In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA has decided that GTC has 
met its burden of persuasion that the FMVSS No. 119 noncompliance in 
the tires identified in GTC's Noncompliance Information Report is 
inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. Accordingly, GTC's petition is 
granted and the petitioner is exempted from the obligation of providing 
notification of, and a remedy for, that noncompliance under 49 U.S.C. 
30118 and 30120.
    NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a 
determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers 
only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, 
to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance 
and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, this decision 
only applies to the tires \1\ that GTC no longer controlled at the time 
that it determined that a noncompliance existed in the subject 
vehicles.
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    \1\ GTC's petition, which was filed under 49 CFR Part 556, 
requests an agency decision to exempt GTC as a manufacturer from the 
notification and recall responsibilities of 49 CFR Part 573 for the 
affected tires. However, the decision on this petition does not 
relieve distributors and dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, 
offer for sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into 
interstate commerce of the noncompliant tires under their control 
after GTC notified them that the subject noncompliance existed.

    Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: delegations of authority at 
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49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8).

    Issued on: February 11, 2013.
Claude H. Harris,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2013-04170 Filed 2-22-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P



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