GAFFNEY, S.C. (July 12, 2001)—Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. and Ford Motor Co. have settled four lawsuits filed in the Cherokee County (S.C.) Court of Common Pleas for an undisclosed amount.
The suits were on behalf of Eddie Bostic, Lisa Smith, Robert Lewis and LeAnne Davis, who were all riding in Mr. Bostic's Ford Explorer, which Ms. Davis was driving in July 2000, when the tread on one of the vehicle's Firestone tires separated. Ms. Smith, Mr. Lewis and Ms. Davis were severely injured in the resulting crash.
Plaintiffs' attorney Ken Holland also named Ronnie Burns Ford of Chesnee, S.C., and Vic's Tire Service of Gaffney, as co-defendants in the suit, but neither paid any money in the settlement, he said.
“We named them in the suit just to keep the case in the county where the accident occurred,” he said. “If we ended up in federal court...it would have been nine years before the case was heard.”