Bridgestone Corp. the world’s largest tire maker by volume announced Thursday it will recall more than one million truck and bus tires due to possible cracks in the tires’ sidewalls.
The recall notice has been issued by the tire maker for 1,204, 707 truck and bus tires manufactured at its plant in Tochigi Prefecture between January 2012 and August this year, company representatives said.
The recall report received by the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry detailing the tires’ flaws showed that at least 40 different types of tires may have fissures in their sidewalls, which may lead to air leaking and a loss of pressure in the tires.
Brigestone stated in the report that the flaws were due to its manufacturing process, while the ministry confirmed that to date 14 complaints regarding the flawed tires have been registered, but the faults have not led to any accidents, as far as the ministry and Bridgestone can ascertain.
The tire maker also said that if it finds fissures, or signs of them developing in the inner lining of the tires in question, it will replace them.
Additionally, recall and safety measures will be followed in line with the respective safety standards of each country for the 100,000 tires with potential defects that have already been sold overseas, Bridgestone said.
The current recall marks the largest the company has faced since the system of recalling tires was introduced in Japan in 2004, but despite the tire maker’s latest stumbling block, Brigestone said on Thursday that its net profit for the fiscal third quarter, ended Sept. 30, almost doubled on year.
The firm said that due to the yen’s retreat and a lower purchasing cost for raw materials, the tire maker managed to secure a net profit of 78.8 billion yen (around 800 million US dollars) in the July-September period, compared with a year- earlier profit of 40.6 billion yen.
Driven by buoyant sales in overseas markets such as North America and China, Bridgestone said on Thursday that revenue surged 22 percent to 900.8 billion yen, while operating profit soared 80 percent to 126.5 billion yen.
For the full fiscal year ending December, however, the tire maker left unchanged its earnings outlook, maintaining that sales in volume are likely to miss earlier forecasts in the second half of the year due to growing competition in China and from other Asian countries.
Separately and possibly unrelated to the current recall issue, Bridgestone announced on Thursday some changes to its senior management lineup effective from the beginning of next year, with Kazuhisa Nishigai, the firm’s Corporate Operating Officer and Representative Board Member, and Senior Vice Presidents Yoshiyuki Morimoto and Narumi Zaitsu all being replaced.