After more than 15 months of dawdling and delay since Congress ended mandatory registration for independent tire dealers, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued the permanent final rule for voluntary tire registration Feb. 8,1984. The rule becomes effective 45 days from that date.
The permanent final rule makes only minor changes, primarily in the registration form, to the interim final rule issued by NHTSA May 19, 1983. However, NHTSA has denied most requests for modifications in the interim final rule, including the stipulation that independent tire dealers fill in their name and address as well as tire identification numbers on all registration forms.
Nor does the final rule alter the original voluntary tire registration provisions of the Motor Vehicle Safety and Cost Savings Authorization Act of 1982, which calls for NHTSA to evaluate the effectiveness of voluntary tire registration two years from the date the bill was passed, which would be Oct. 15, 1984. At that time, the agency is directed to determine whether to impose any additional requirements on independent dealers or manufacturers to promote higher levels of registration.
If voluntary registration is determined to be a flop, NHTSA also has the authority to order a return to mandatory registration. Contrary to earlier indications by NHTSA officials that the …