PALM BEACH, Fla. (Oct. 8, 2013) — A jury in the 15th Judicial Circuit of Palm Beach County has ordered Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. to pay nearly $10 million in damages to a woman who claimed a Continental tire on her car was defective.
Tracey Parker originally sued Conti, Wal-Mart Stores East Inc. and a local Chevrolet dealer in the case. According to the lawsuit, Ms. Parker purchased a new Chevrolet Cobalt from the dealership in April 2006 that was equipped with Continental Contact tires, size 195/60R15 87S. She had the car and tires serviced for the next three years at her local Wal-Mart outlet.
Ms. Parker was driving on I-95 in Stuart, Fla., in May 2009 when one of her tires allegedly suffered a tread separation, causing he to lose control; the car rolled over several times. She suffered what the amended complaint, filed April 1, 2010, called "catastrophic bodily injuries."
Ms. Parker sued on behalf of herself; her husband Edward Parker; and her sons Martin Burrett, Christopher Burrett and Johnathan Parker. Among other things, she claimed that Continental Tire was negligent in the design, testing, manufacturing and inspection of the tire.
Conti flatly denied all of Ms. Parker's allegations. In its defense the tire maker asserted that the incident and damages alleged in Ms. Parker's lawsuit "were caused in whole or in part by the negligent or otherwise improper conduct of other third parties over whom (Conti) had no control or duty to control."
The company also said in its defense that the tire in question "was misused and abused," causing the alleged tire failure.
Conti officials could not be reached for further comment.