WASHINGTON (Nov. 30)—The U.S. tire industry will experience a record year this year in tire shipments, with a projection of 328 million units, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association. The total represents a 3.7-percent increase over the previous record of 316.6 million units from 1999. Much of the year´s growth will be owed to the 6.5 million P-metric tires being replaced in the Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. recall, the RMA said. The tires involved in the recall will undercut replacement shipments of P-metric tires over the next couple of years as tires that would have been replaced in 2001 and 2002 are being replaced in 2000, the RMA said. Shipment growth for 2000 is expected in the original equipment passenger tire, replacement passenger tire, replacement light truck and replacement medium truck tire categories. Original equipment demand for light and medium truck tires, on the other hand, will fall 11 and 15.7 percent from 1999 volumes.