Transcript - Ford/Firestone Class Action - Fox News Chicago - January 1, 2001

Ford/Firestone Class Action
Fox News
January 1, 2000

02:15 - 04:31

Reporter 1: Ford Motor Company has apologized to a Texas woman for the wreck of her Ford Explorer. The apology came as part of a settlement in what was to be the first faulty tire lawsuit to go to trial. Darlene Hill is in our newsroom with more on that story and what this could mean for people in the Chicago area. Darlene:

Reporter 2: Good afternoon Maryanne. That case was supposed to go to trial this week, but in a last minute move Ford and Firestone agreed to a settlement. While the monetary settlement and the full details have not yet been made public, an attorney representing people here in the Chicago area says it's a major victory for others with lawsuits already pending. Now that lawsuit accuses Firestone of a history of tire problems, citing seven recalls since 1978, while the suit claims the latest recall was not enough because it only includes certain tires manufactured at Firestones Dow State Decatur plant. Attorneys for the Texas woman, now paralyzed after her Ford Explorer rolled over, say the recall did not include tires made at other plants in the United States. While the monetary settlement was apparently very large, a Chicago attorney says the biggest thing to come out of this settlement is that it force the companies to admit they did something wrong.

Ken Moll: Ford and Firestone did not go far enough, they did not do the right thing. They did not recall all the defective tires. There are a lot of people out there in the nation that have a false sense of security, that if their tires are not included in the recall that they are safe. This is one lawsuit that indicates that that is not true. Ford has accepted responsibility in this case, that 16' tires or Wilderness AT tires manufactured in plants other than Decatur are defective.

Reporter 2: Well, Ford and Bridgestone Firestone were instructed to apologize, but within the next couple of weeks some internal documents will be made public and the attorney that we spoke to earlier this morning says what's on them is stuff drivers of Ford Explorer with Bridgestone Firestone tires will be looking for. So of course we'll continue to watch this story this morning. We'll try to have more on the 9:00 news. Robin back to you in the studio.

Reporter 1: Boy, it makes a lot more tires suspect, doesn't it Darlene?

Reporter 2: It sure does. The attorney that I spoke to said even if you don't have any of the AT, the ATW, the Wilderness tires, if you are driving a Ford Explorer he still says it, he emphasizes, get your car checked out, get your Ford Explorer and your Firestone tires checked out.

Reporter 1: All right, thank you Darlene for that report.