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Faulty Firestone Tires kills over 21 people?

Discussion in 'Auto Industry News' started by Cameron, August 2, 2000.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. flyguy

    flyguy Well-Known Member

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    Speaking of... Im guessing they are going to give me a creidit for tires... so whats the opinion of the bridgestones?

    nick
     
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  3. Blaine Cooper

    Blaine Cooper Active Member

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    Ralph Nader was on Fox News Channel this morning talking about his Presidential bid, but the Firestone thing came up. He said there were 80 something accidents and 48 deaths. Where are all these numbers coming from? Still yet, if Firestone's 48,000,000 number is accurate then a very miniscule fraction of a percent of the tires are "going bad". I know my 93 Explorer had ATXs for 90,000 miles with zero problems.
     
  4. SteveVB

    SteveVB Elite Explorer

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    I read a report (which I now cannot find the url for.) that compared Firestone equipt explorers with non firestone Jeep cheorkees(because they use no firestone tires). The article will have the details but the rate for the firestones was about 2.5% and those without was .3%. or about 9 or 10 times less. Survey was on 10 years of data.
    I beliebve the report was written by a group that works for class action lawyers, so the numbers were presented from their veiw point. That said, it is interesting to note that from their study the majority of the tires were older than 3 years old at the time of the accident. This would imply to me that the problem is age related, a tire over three years would have maybe 40-50K or more miles on it. Also interesting that the recalls are starting in the southern states, as pointed out by someone earlier in this thread about the heat, and the c temp rating- that was dead on.

    Got to find the article now.

    One more thing, Although Bridgestone and Firestone brands are owned by the same co. the tires themselves are different designs so you cant say that because Firestone tires ... then Bridgestone is no good- that is just irresponsible. For that matter any tire outside of the ones in question has to be judged on its own merits.
     
  5. SteveVB

    SteveVB Elite Explorer

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    Here are the articles that I was referencing in my last post. The first is the one about the study and the second a follow on with more info.

    I like this paragraph from the second article , basically says that because of the good tread wear people use them longer which contributes to the problem- a little ironic I guess.

    "The tires have earned praise from consumers for their high mileage, with accounts of driving over 90,000 miles on a single set of ATXs.

    But some experts wonder whether the long-lasting tred has exacerbated the problem, with drivers keeping tires that may be developing tred separation on a vehicle until failure occurs."


    Following up what I said earlier about the age of the tires, notice that only 5 of the fatalities occured in the first two years:

    "Thirteen of the 22 tire problems occurred in the third and fourth years of use and 18 of the 22 occurred in the first four years of use, which suggests that they were mostly ageing original equipment tires, Robertson said."


    Just some number info. and the links to the two articles.


    http://biz.yahoo.com/rf/000808/n08184601_2.html


    http://biz.yahoo.com/rf/000808/n08316232.html
     
  6. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Yep. I'm very impressed by the way they're handling this problem. Will it make me buy Firestone tires? Probably not.
     
  7. Cameron

    Cameron Well-Known Member

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    ALERT

    Just heard on the radio that Firestone will replace the "defective" tire models regardless of age or condition. You all who have these Firestone tires need to contact a Firestone dealer near you for the exact make they are replacing.

    :bounce:

    Just an FYI
     
  8. flyguy

    flyguy Well-Known Member

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    According to some acticle I just read, the HT's are not being recalled.

    nick
     
  9. 2001ExpSport

    2001ExpSport Elite Explorer

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    16"

    Just talked to Firestone and they said that all Wilderness R16 tires are not effected and not being replaced.
     
  10. ExploderOne

    ExploderOne Member

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    What a crock of shit!!! :fire: :frustrate I just got done watching the press conference at http://www.firestone-usa.com (follow the link on the main page). Firestone says that they don't know what is exactly causing the separation problems, but narrowed it down to only the 235/75/15's. AAhemm, bullshit! :nono: The manufacturing process of the tire is in question here and you can't tell me that they use separate processes for different sizes with in the same model. In addition they say that the Wilderness AT manufactured at the Decatur, IL are under question, of course just the 235/75/15's. How do they know if they don't know what is causing the separation. IMHO If they actually don't know what is causing the tire separation, this is just an inept attempt at snowballing the general public into thinking that Firestone has a "We care about people more than we care about our bottom line" stance...yeah right. They just didn't include all the tire sizes so they won't have to pay for replacing every tire size they make. I guess I'm just pissed off because I have 16" tires and feel like I got the shaft on this one. I'll get off my soapbox now.

    [Edited by ExploderOne on 08-09-2000 at 04:22 PM]
     
  11. 2001ExpSport

    2001ExpSport Elite Explorer

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    Firestone Tires

    I have 16's too, but I am not really worried about it. I am not out to get a "free" set of tires. Seems to me that most of you are pissed because you can't get a new set of different brand tires. Put yourself in Firestone's position. This is not an easy task, your tires are being blamed for people's deaths. Most of which were during high speeds with under inflated tires and high temps. I know for a fact that these Wilderness tires are not rated for high speeds. I also know that any under inflated tire is going to fail at high speeds, I don't care what tire you have. Everybody has their own opinion on the quality of Firestones. I personnaly have never had a problem. The media likes to blow things out of proportion too. I know in this day and age, someone like me would be considered a fool to trust a large company. Firestone is not out to kill us, mistakes happen and they are doing what is right. The tires that have caused the problems are being replaced. Not the tires that haven't.
     
  12. ExploderOne

    ExploderOne Member

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    2001ExpSport-

    I'm not trying to get a "free" set of new tires, if my families safety is at stake and it's because of known bad tires I would consider prorating very adequate. I just was a little aggravated how Firestone justified limiting the recall to the 235/75/15's. - Just because they have more complaints with that size tire? - In my opinion that isn't enough research into the problem. Maybe I haven't given Firestone enough credit, maybe they will do more research and expand the recall to more sizes later, or not. But they have known about the tire problems for sometime, Ford replaced the Firestones in some other countries almost a year ago. A few coworkers have Explorers with the Firestones and when I brought this to their attention they explained to me that they (all three of them) have had separation problems with their Firestones. Maybe they aren't very diligent about keeping the correct pressure in their tires, but I don't think that people that own Firestones are the only ones who don't keep on top of their tire pressures. However, the Firestones have a 10 to 1 higher incident rating compared to other like tires. I do feel that my families safety is my issue and not Firestone's, or Ford's. But I also feel that if the bad tires were OE and Firestone handles the warranty for them they should shoulder some of the cost of replacement. I'm not out to get Firestone in anyway, I have Firestone Firehawk SH30's (a tire developed after Bridgestone acquired Firestone)on my car and I absolutely love them. I would consider myself a hard driver when in my car and these tires impress me daily. They're grippy, handle like a dream, and, at slightly elevated speeds over the speed limit -hehe-, are vibration free. I would recommend them to anyone, but not my Wilderness AT's. They wear well, other than that I have nothing positive to say about them.

    Hope I didn't set anyone off.
     
  13. 2001ExpSport

    2001ExpSport Elite Explorer

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    Yes, I know what you mean. I didn't mean that you guys were trying to just get free tires out of the blue. I understand if you have the faulty tires that you paid for, you should obviously get full compensation for them. I just meant that just because a certain size tire is not affected doesn't mean that Firestone is trying to pull the wool over our eyes.
     
  14. ExploderOne

    ExploderOne Member

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    After listening to the Press Conference I got that impression. I may be wrong but some of the questions the press asked could have been addressed instead of the typical "I'm not aware of that", "I wasn't involved in that". I hate that crap! If the collection of people put together to represent Firestone are not the experts on the specifics of whats going on with the tires in question, what the H-E-Double-toothpicks are they doing there? All in all, I feel that there was some definite lip service going on.
     
  15. 2001ExpSport

    2001ExpSport Elite Explorer

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    Illinois drivers last in recall line

    August 10, 2000

    BY BRENDA WARNER ROTZOLL STAFF REPORTER






    About 14.4 million radial tires have been recalled and will be switched for free amid concerns about tire tread separation, but the maker said Wednesday that Illinois drivers will be last in line for the replacements.

    Bridgestone/Firestone recalled its 15-inch ATX and ATX II radial tires made in North America for the past decade and all Wilderness 15-inchers made in Downstate Decatur.

    Tire Recall

    Here's what owners of the P235/75R15 Firestone radial ATX and radial ATX II brand tires (produced in North America) and the Wilderness AT brand tires can expect:
    Illinois customers will be getting new tires at the tail end of the replacement effort. The company is replacing tires in the South first because most crashes linked to the tire have occurred in hot-weather states.
    Customers will receive a letter from the manufacturer with steps to be taken.
    The recall can be handled at either a tire outlet or auto dealership.
    Tires will be replaced with an equivalent Bridgestone/Firestone tire or a comparable competitor's tire.
    In the meantime, owners are advised to check tires for unusual wear and for proper tire pressure. Ford recommends a tire pressure of 26-30 pounds per square inch; Firestone recommends a tire pressure of 30 psi.
    For more information, call 1-800-465-1904 or log on to http://www.bridgestone-firestone.com

    Since the Chicago Sun-Times spotlighted dangerous tires in April, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has started a probe of nearly 300 complaints of failures involving the Firestone tires, including scores of injuries and 46 deaths.

    Most of the complaints involve rubber treads separating from steel radial belts, sometimes when vehicles are traveling at high speeds.

    Gary Crigger, executive vice president of the Nashville-based tire manufacturer, said the company was taking "this extraordinary step as a precaution to ensure consumer safety and consumer confidence in our brands."

    Crigger said the recall is unconditional. "No matter how many tires, no matter how many miles they have on them, we will replace them with new tires"--either comparable Firestone brands or tires from competitors, he said.

    It probably will take 18 months to complete the recall because there aren't enough replacement tires to go around, the company said.

    A three-phase recall will give first priority to customers in Florida, Texas, Arizona and California. That's because most crashes, injuries and the deaths so far linked to the tires were reported in those hot-weather states, the company said.

    The second phase of the recall will target Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, Oklahoma and Tennessee, and should be complete by the end of this year, the company said. The remaining states, including Illinois and other Midwestern states, will be last.

    News of the recall sent some Firestone owners scurrying to dealers and tire shops to make sure their tires are in good shape.

    "We can look at them but we really can't do anything else because we haven't been notified on what to do," said Ed Goodard, who owns Hoppe Tire Co., 615 N. Ogden. "Even after we check them, I still see the hesitation from some people when they pull out of here."

    Vince Ragland of Harvey who owns a 1998 Ford Explorer that came equipped with Firestone tires, said, "While I'm trying to get information, I'm driving my family around on these tires. I think I won't drive it as much until I can get some information."

    Although the recall involves 14.4 million Wilderness, ATX and ATX II tires size P235/75R15 tires, the company estimates only about 6.5 million of them still are in use. That includes 3.8 million ATX and ATX II tires and 2.7 million Wilderness AT tires.

    Other size ATX, ATXII and Wilderness tires are not affected.

    All the Wilderness tires being recalled were made at the Firestone plant in Downstate Decatur, between summer 1996 and fall 1999. ATX and ATX II tires in the 15-inch rim size were made at Bridgestone/Firestone's eight U.S. and one Mexican plant between 1988 and 2000.

    "The Decatur, Illinois, plant is over-represented in the accident claims and reports compared with other plants,'' Crigger said.

    Wilderness tires made at Decatur bear the code letters VD. But it's hard to see them, Bridgestone/Firestone spokeswoman Christine Karbowiak said, so the company urges anyone with 15-inch Wilderness tires to take them to a Firestone dealer for inspection.

    Critics maintained the tires should have been taken off the highways sooner and that the manufacturer--as well as automakers using the tires--had indications of problems as far back as the early 1990s.

    The NHTSA did not begin its investigation of the tires until after the Sun-Times published reports in April about many crashes and court suits involving them.

    About 70 percent of the tires are on Ford sport utility vehicles and light pickups, including Ford's popular Explorer SUV. The tires also are used on some Nissan, Toyota and Subaru vehicles.

    Crigger said the company continues to believe the tires are safe, but that "the abundance of concern surrounding these tires clearly indicates the need for this action."

    Contributing: Lucio Guerrero
     
  16. ExplorerEB96

    ExplorerEB96 Elite Explorer<br>Explorer Babe

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    I have 16" rims too... I had to go out and buy 15" rims to put on my BF Goodrich A/T KOs at inspection..(heh Ford dealership wouldn't pass it due to tread problems). I had many close calls, numerous flats, and the general feeling of those tires just were very uuuh crappy. Anyway I still had the Wilderness A/Ts mounted on the 16" in a shed... I brought them up even after the recall... (it just gave my arguement more ammunition) they were 255 70R16.. I showed them my uuuhh porfolio of reciepts for paying for replacement tires from the "phantom flats" (phantom meaning that they thought I ran over schrapnel or nails along the roadway) 8 times!!!! in 2 years.... I replaced tires due to the supposedly "phantom flats" HHHMM like I said...it seems like they have cleaned up the roads quite nicely since I got my BFGs...they have been on for 8 months and the tread is still nice and deep... no signs of wear (another reason they stated treadwear.. the suspension and allignment...found a reciept from only 2 weeks ago that read "Courtesey Check- passed" from Firestone themselves..
    So armed with that.. and about 2 years of aggravated complaining about these tires I marched in the Firestone dealer and told them that I didn't want $$$ back I just wanted tires ... they offered me Duelers H/L not even A/Ts because they are backordered... Anyway I picked out a set of Dueler M/Ts and they will be here Fri... I just feel lied to.... I was told that absolutely, possitively, no other tire is available for my truck so I had to take the Wilderness... Anyway I spend about $1600 in two years for 2 sets of 4 tires... and about 6 treadwear/flat problems... I had them prorate them but the one tire (the manager admitted it looked suspicously like a seperation waiting to happen) anyway I got &650 tires for $350 not bad for them.... not bad for me either...
     
  17. Peter Weber

    Peter Weber Active Member

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    Don't like to say I told you so, but ......

    I posted the above on 8/2. And what do I read today in the Los Angeles Times. I quote:

    'Firestone recommends the tires being inflated to 30 pounds per square inch, whereas Ford had adviced Explorer owners to maintain the tires at 26 psi - until the past week, that is, when the auto maker began to harmonize its recommendation with Firestone's by calling for a range of 26 psi to 30 psi.
    Experts say lower tire inflation would tend to put more stress and heat on tires riding at highway speeds, thus making them more likely to fail. And Firestone plant workers point out that the firm's testing and grading procedures are based on the recommended 30 psi.
    Ford has said it advised the lower tire pressure to provide a smoother, more car-like ride on the vehicles' stiff truck frames.'

    [Edited by Peter Weber on 08-14-2000 at 10:19 AM]
     
  18. ExploderOne

    ExploderOne Member

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    Good call Peter! :smoke:
     
  19. The Godfather

    The Godfather Active Member

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    It's been a LOOOOOONG time since I posted but I had to come complain about this. I knew about the problems with Firestone a long time ago. I worked at a gas station on the thruway for a month this summer. We did service calls. Out of the 11 that I went to, 7 were Firestone blow outs. And not just the Wilderness, all of them had problems. I'm winding up spending $450 to replace the tires on my SHO, which came with Firestones, because the bead broke and I caught it just before it was ready to blow out. The others are showing cracks around the tread. Thank you Firestone!
     
  20. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Hey good to see ya! Yes, my suggestion would be to never buy Firestone tires, for the reasons everyone has listed, plus they just aren't good tires. Loud, rough, high rolling resistance..
     

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