WASHINGTON (Nov 1)—Overall U.S. tire shipments for August grew steadily, driven by growth in the passenger, light truck and total categories, while the medium and heavy truck categories took dips compared with figures from August 1999. For the first eight months of 2000, total tire shipments increased 6.2 percent to 341.2 million units, according to data published by the Rubber Manufacturers Association. Total passenger tire shipments increased 6.7 percent to 27.5 million units, the light truck category posted a 7.6-percent increase to 4.6 million units and medium truck tire shipments decreased 3.5 percent to 2 million units, data show. A 16.3-percent decrease in the heavy truck category brought shipments down to 28,8000 units in August from 34,400 units in the same period of 1999. Total tire shipments for the year-to-date also have shown an increase of 2.7 percent, boosting shipment numbers to 236.6 million units from 230.3 million.