Action News 5 Investigators: Driving On Danger Follow-Up

It's a tire registration card.  Looks just like this:

Tire wholesaler Robert Hartelust with Nussbaum Distributing in Memphis says tire retailers are supposed to fill out the cards and issue them to customers with each tire they buy.

But he says they don't.

"The retailers probably tend to forget," says Hartelust.

The cards list the tire dealer's identification number, the customer's contact information AND the Department of Transportation's 4-digit code on every tire that indicates the WEEK and YEAR the tire was manufactured.  That's the code the Action News 5 Investigators revealed in our 2-part investigation Driving On Danger (

As we reported, the problem with that code is most tire manufacturers etch the code on the INSIDE WALL of the tire.  Consumers have to crawl under their cars to see it.

"Crawling under the car is really not my idea of fun, and it really shouldn't be the job of the consumer to do that," Hartelust says.

Instead, when you buy your next set of tires, ask your retailer to fill out and provide you one of the cards in the link above.  Keep a copy in your glove box and send the original off to the address listed on it:

CIMS Tire Industry Registration Center

P.O. Box 1000

Akron, OH 44309-1000.

That's the center that registers all tires.  If there's a recall on your tire, CIMS should automatically notify you through the contact information you wrote on the card.  Hartelust says these are the same cards federal safety investigators used to track down some of the failed Firestone tires during the company's massive recall in the summer of 2000.