Tire inflation: From campaign joke to California rule | SierraSun.com

Tire inflation: From campaign joke to California rule

DON THOMPSON
Associated Press Writer

SACRAMENTO ” An issue that briefly brought President Barack Obama ridicule on the campaign trail last year is gaining traction with California air regulators.

The state Air Resources Board adopted a resolution Thursday requiring auto repair shops to check tire pressure every time drivers bring in their vehicle for maintenance and smog tests.

Board members say mandating properly inflated tires will reduce fuel consumption ” saving 75 million gallons of gasoline a year statewide ” as well as greenhouse gas emissions.

Republicans ridiculed then-candidate Obama last summer for suggesting that properly inflated tires would save oil.

It’s no laughing matter to California regulators, who hope the idea spreads to other states. They will develop detailed rules to implement the mandate, which will take effect in July 2010.