Site to Educate Motorists about Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems

As the new 2008 automobile models are rolling out onto dealership lots, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers wants consumers to know that a useful new safety system will now be standard on all new vehicles.

The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) will now be available and standard on all 2008 automobile models. TPMS is an automated system that monitors the air pressure of your vehicle's tires. When a vehicle's tire pressure is under inflated, the new TPMS symbol will light-up on your automobile's dashboard to indicate low tire pressure.

"Making TPMS standard on all 2008 models is just part of automobile manufacturers' continued efforts to improve safety in vehicles," said David McCurdy, president and CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "Drivers need to maintain and be aware of proper tire pressure, which is just another important step in helping to ensure the safety of their vehicles while driving."

And in order to make drivers aware of the new standard TPMS symbol, the alliance has launched a Web site, http://www.checkmytires.com, to help people familiarize themselves with the new dashboard symbol and learn how maintaining proper tire pressure plays a role in safety and fuel efficiency. The site also allows users to check the weather in their hometown and take an interactive quiz to learn about how changes in temperature can affect a vehicle's tires.

Driving an automobile with under inflated tires can compromise the safety and fuel efficiency of the vehicle. Under inflated tires can lead to accidents that involve skidding or loss of control, hydroplaning on wet surfaces, flat tires and blowouts. Additionally, fuel efficiency is reduced one percent for every three-PSI under-inflation, so keeping tires properly inflated translates to a free tank of gas every year.

"Many factors impact a vehicle's tire pressure, including cooler temperatures," McCurdy said. "Fall is around the corner and while the new tire pressure symbol in all 2008 vehicles will let drivers know when their pressure is low, it is not meant to be a substitute for maintaining proper tire pressure. We urge drivers to check their tire pressure at least once a month and before long driving trips."

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