Michelin Man Keeps US Motorists Under Pressure
Motorists in the US now have another safe driving resource at their fingertips, thanks to Michelin North America and the Clemson University Automotive Safety Research Institute (CU-ASRI). The two organisations celebrated their long-standing partnership on June 11 with the dedication of a new safety initiative, and took the occasion to remind drivers that proper tyre inflation pressure is a key automotive safety component and a boost to fuel efficiency.
The two parties selected the US National Tire Safety Week to dedicate their new tyre inflation station. The facility, situated near the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research, shouldn’t be difficult to locate – Michelin notes that the Michelin Tire Inflation Station features a six-foot tall replica of Bibendum, the instantly recognisable Michelin Man. Bib, as we at T&A like to call him, provides a highly visible opportunity for drivers to check and adjust tyre inflation pressure as they leave the centre’s parking area.
“Tyres are an extremely important safety feature of the automobile. Accurate tyre inflation pressure is one of the most easily managed – and one of the most easily overlooked – aspects of automotive safety,” said CU-ASRI executive director Kim Alexander. “Unless a tyre is obviously flat, it is far too easy to assume all is well. We invite the public to use this inflation station at their convenience. We are very excited that Michelin has partnered with CU-ASRI to provide this important safety tool and are very appreciative of their support of CU-ASRI initiatives over the years.”
The National Highway Safety Administration estimates that under-inflated tyres contribute to more than 600 fatalities and 33,000 injuries in the US each year. Michelin has long urged consumers to regularly monitor tyre pressure to optimise vehicle safety. The company conducts regular tyre safety events in at its South Carolina headquarters and across North America throughout the year.
“It only takes a few minutes to examine your tyres and check the inflation pressure. This station provides the tens of thousands of motorists who travel along I-85 in Greenville each day with a new opportunity to enhance safety on the road,” said Sarah Miller, director of safety and environmental initiatives for Michelin North America. “We are proud to dedicate this useful tool that promotes safer mobility as part of our long standing partnership with Clemson.”
Chris Przirembel, Clemson’s vice president for research and economic development, praised Michelin as an exemplary university partner: “Michelin North America supports Clemson University in more ways than we can ever adequately thank them for. They are research partners, economic development partners, workforce development partners, and partners in community service,” he said. “Their relationship with the Clemson University Automotive Safety Research Institute over many years has focused on interdisciplinary teaching, research and public service. This unique joint project is especially valuable for educating the public about tyre safety and providing the means for evaluating and correcting problems on the spot.”