DEARBORN, Mich. (Dec. 28, 2000) — Ford Motor Co. has settled on seven claims resulting from accidents involving the Ford Explorer sport-utility and defective Firestone tires, the Associated Press reports, citing lawyers in the case. Amounts of the settlements were not disclosed.
Joel Smith, an attorney representing Ford, told the AP that the auto maker "found itself in the unenviable position of having a large number of lawsuits about these tires and is making an effort to see whether some cases can be resolved promptly and reasonably."
Bruce Kaster, a lawyer for plaintiffs in six of the seven cases, said Ford lawyers apologized for quality problems with the tires. Mr. Kaster told the AP that the settlement amounts were fair. Claims involving the same accidents settled by Ford are still pending with Bridgestone/Firestone Inc.
Bridestone/Firestone Inc. on Aug. 9 issued a recall of 6.5 million tires, which allegedly have been involved in 148 traffic deaths and more than 500 injuries in the U.S., according to filings with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.