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|08-11-2000, 09:52 AM||#1|
Wannabe Elite Explorer
Join Date: Apr 2000
Taken from http://www.safetyforum.com/
Wednesday, August 9, 2000
Attorneys representing families affected by tire failures are expressing concern that Firestone might not be able to provide immediate safe replacement tires for the defective ATX and Wilderness AT tires. "We urge car dealers and tire retailers to provide safe and appropriate replacement tires-regardless of brand-- immediately" said consumer attorneys Tab Turner of Little Rock, Arkansas and Taras Kick of Los Angeles.
The majority of the tire failures have been reported on 1991 through current model year Ford Explorers. The Explorer is designed with severe tire restrictions due to the increased tendency of the vehicle to roll over in ordinary turning maneuvers. Any modification of the tires may make the vehicle even more prone to rolling over under these driving conditions. Consumers need to be fully informed about the implications of any modification in the tire type, including tread pattern. Both attorneys are "Attorney of Record" for tires on Safetyforum.com.
They pointed out that Firestone's offer of a visual inspection does nothing but lull owners into a false sense of safety and security. "These structural failures are internal to the tire and can not be detected or predicted by visual inspection," they said.
It is unreasonable to expect consumers and their families to ride on defective tires while Firestone produces an adequate number of replacements. It is also unreasonable for Firestone to expect their customers to buy replacement tires, paying twice for Firestone=s mistake. Firestone and retail tire dealers should provide adequate replacement tires immediately at no charge to their customers.
"Although the free inspections that Firestone is offering may be productive in locating cosmetic problems with a tire, a visual inspection is worthless insofar as problems inside of the tire are concerned. Firestone's offer of a free inspection does nothing but create a false sense of action, safety and security. The consumer should have the right to demand a full and immediate remedy, not a cosmetic assurance that the tire looks okay," the attorneys said.
In an effort to help consumers with Firestone dealers, Safetyforum.com is posting a form and letter to assist in getting their tires replaced. The forms and letters ensure that Firestone, tire retailers, vehicle manufacturers and their dealers have notice that they will be held accountable for injuries occurring if the problem is not remedied by dealers. Consumers should make sure their Firestone dealer completes and signs the form following the free inspection. A copy of the form and the accompanying letter should be sent to Firestone, Ford and other manufacturers who use Firestone ATX and Wilderness AT tires.
Turner and Kick are Safetyforum.com "Attorneys of Record" for tires. "We became Safetyforum.com 'Attorney's of Record' because we've seen how tire failures can cause crashes and tear families apart. Our goal is to help educate the public about these hazards and put pressure on manufacturers to do a better job. Participating in Safetyforum.com is an important part of doing that." Turner and Kick said.
The attorneys have drafted model letters and forms to assist consumers with Firestone, Ford and other tire retailers who have sold these tires.
1. Print out letters and forms available at Safetyforum.com.
2. Take their car, truck or SUV to where ever they bought the tires and request an immediate replacement at no charge.
3. If the dealer or retailer refuses to replace the tires immediately, insist that they fill out and sign the Safetyforum.com forms. Send a copy of the form to Firestone and to the vehicle manufacturer, if the tires were on the vehicle when it was purchased new.
4. Immediately contact Ford Motor Company to determine what tire is safe and appropriate for the Explorer as a replacement for the defective tires to ensure that the vehicle's rollover resistance is not further impaired by the application of incorrect or unsafe tire sizes and types.
C. Tab Turner, Turner & Associates, P.A.
4702 West Commercial Drive, Suite B3, Little Rock, AR 72116
Taras Kick, The Kick Law Firm
660 S. Figueroa St., #1800, Los Angeles, CA 90017
Ralph Hoar, Safetyforum.com
P.O. Box 470, Arlington, VA 22210
MODEL LETTERS AND FORMS TO ASSIST CONSUMERS WITH FIRESTONE, FORD AND TIRE RETAILERS WHO HAVE SOLD FIRESTONE ATX, ATX II AND WILDERNESS AT TIRES
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