The Goodyear Tire &
Rubber company announced recently that it has selected its second
aviation tire evaluation center, the 43 Air School in Port Alfred,
South Africa. This is Goodyear’s first center in the Southern
The South African air school has 40 registered aircraft logging
the hours of future commercial pilots. The academy also has an
impeccable safety record.
Goodyear’s other evaluation facility is the Embry-Riddle
Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Similar to the Florida center, the 43 Air School will evaluate
Goodyear and competitor tires based on their durability and safe
landings. The school’s test results will be recorded and sent
to the United States to measure Goodyear’s overall tire
"Goodyear Proving Grounds around the world test passenger car,
light truck, agriculture, medium truck and earthmover tires. But
when it comes to aviation tires, we don’t have a fleet of
airplanes landing and taking off," said Richard Brown, general
aviation sales and marketing manager.
"For about 25 years, we’ve relied on Embry-Riddle to
provide a controlled environment with many planes and many flights
that generate landings. To evaluate aircraft tire performance, we
need aircraft and we need landings to provide data quickly," Brown
Four years ago, the company used Embry-Riddle to develop the
Flight Custom III tire for general aviation. Goodyear’s
marketing agreement with the aeronautical university includes
evaluations, promotions and testimonials on aviation tire
performance, he said.
The 43 Air School will be used to evaluate tires on aircraft
built and flown in the Southern Hemisphere. "The facility will make
us more competitive in that part of the world," Brown said.
The company also is
looking at other flight training schools to expand its evaluation
capability, he added.
Goodyear is the world’s largest supplier of tires for
commercial, military and general aviation aircraft. The company
manufactures aviation tires in Danville, Va.; Bangkok, Thailand;
and Sao Paulo, Brazil.