WASHINGTON (June 15) — Four major tire makers and the Tire Industry Association lack standing under Title III of the Constitution to sue the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over tire pressure monitoring systems, a three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Circuit has ruled.
TIA, Goodyear, Bridgestone/Firestone, Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. and Pirelli Tire L.L.C. joined with the consumer group Public Citizen two years ago, filing suit to have NHTSA´s tire pressure monitoring system rule overturned.
The plaintiffs were upset over the 25-percent underinflation differential before the monitoring system warning light flashes on and the 20-minute lapse between the system´s noting an underinflated tire and notifying the driver.
"The tire industry petitioners´ theory of how (the monitoring system standard) might cause them harm is far too attenuated," the majority said in a 2-1 decision.
Public Citizen, however, was welcome to make supplemental submission to the court to prove its standing to sue NHTSA, the majority ruled. The dissenting judge said he also would have dismissed Public Citizen´s claim.
An attorney for the plaintiffs said his clients were still studying the decision to determine their course of action.