Tire-manufacturer Michelin has announced a major tire recall. Approximately 1.2 million tires manufactured over a two-year period and distributed in the U.S. may have a defect that causes the tire treads to separate, resulting in rapid tire deflation. This tread separation can cause the vehicle to swerve out of control and crash.
Unfortunately, these tires are for commercial light trucks, heavy-duty vans, larger pickups and SUVs — just the types of vehicles drivers expect to use for haulage and off-road driving, activities that put additional stress on tires.
The tire recall is voluntary and, luckily, no injuries or deaths have been reported. While Michelin says that only around 200 have been returned, a potentially significant percentage of the tires may be defective.
The affected tires were installed as original equipment on certain Ford vehicles, and also supplied as replacement tires on various full-size vans, small SUVs, large pickups and light commercial trucks.
The tire recall covers:
Michelin LTX M/X tires, size LT225/75R16 115/112R LRE
Manufactured between Jan. 10, 2010 and June 23, 2012
If you have been in an accident in which these tires were on either vehicle, even if there were no injuries, you should report it the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236. If there were injuries, you should consider contacting an attorney.
Michelin plans begin notifying consumers starting Jan. 6, but such notices typically can only be sent to consumers who received the tires as original equipment or directly from a Michelin dealer. People who bought used vehicles with the tires and those who purchased the tires from other dealers may not receive notifications.
If you drive a light commercial truck, larger pickup, full-size heavy-duty van or SUV, regardless of brand, you should immediately check all of the tires to see if they are included in this recall. If they are, Michelin stores will replace them at no charge.
If you have tires affected by this or any recall, replace them immediately. The risk of tread separation causing your vehicle to swerve out of control is not a risk you can afford to take.
If your local Michelin dealer won’t replace the tires before Jan. 6, you can call Michelin Consumer Care at 800-231-5893, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Eastern time or on Saturday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time. You can also call NHTSA.
- Cars.com’s Kicking Tires blog, “Recall Alert: Michelin LTX M/S Tires,” Matt Schmitz, Dec. 16, 2013
- SFGate, “Michelin recalls 1.2 million tires in US,” Associated Press, Dec. 14, 2013