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Ask the Mayor: Why Wide Tires are Illegal in Maui County

December 9, 2014, 10:08 AM HST · Updated December 15, 7:04 AM
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Lifted truck with wide tires. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Lifted truck with wide tires. Photo by Wendy Osher.

The mayor answers questions from the public in this series.

By Mayor Alan Arakawa

Q: Why is it illegal to have wide tires on lifted trucks or low riders?

A: Maui County Code chapter 10.20.450 (“Mudguards”) states that tires must not protrude farther than any fender or other attachment, as that creates a potential safety hazard.

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Specifically, the code states that no person shall operate on any highway any motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer unless equipped with “fenders, covers or devices, including flaps or splash aprons or unless the body of the vehicle or attachments afford adequate protection to effectively minimize the spray or splash of water or mud to the rear of the vehicle.”

According to the State Department of Transportation, Periodic Motor Vehicle Inspection Manual for Inspectors of Passenger Cars and Light Trucks, vehicles will not pass safety inspection if the vehicle’s fenders are missing, loosely attached, damaged or do not cover the width of the tire tread.

Vehicle owners should check with their safety inspection station before purchasing and installing wider tires that exceed the vehicle manufacturer’s tire size recommendations to ensure they are able to pass inspection.

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Want to Ask the Mayor?

Submit your questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa via email: [email protected], phone: 270-7855 or mail: 200 S. High Street, 9th Floor, Wailuku, Hawaii 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the Ask the Mayor column.

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