WASHINGTON (Sept. 13, 2000)—Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. dealers and company-owned stores will inspect all 1.4 million tires in the government´s Sept. 1 consumer advisory for free, and replace them free if customers are still nervous about them, according to BFS Executive Vice President John Lampe. Mr. Lampe told the Senate Commerce Committee that if owners of the tires choose non-Firestone replacements, the company will reimburse them up to $140 per tire.
Originally, while BFS refused to recall the tires outright, it offered free inspection and replacement. But then Bridgestone/Firestone CEO Masatoshi Ono said in a letter on the BFS website that the company would only replace those tires it found to be defective. Mr. Lampe´s statement marks a reversal of Ono´s letter.