In regards to the story "Court reinstates wrongful death suit against Toyo, Les Schwab", I have been an independent tire dealer for more than 55 years. I have been a Toyo retailer for well over 20 years. Toyo has been an excellent flagship line of tires for this company. They are a quality product.
No tire manufacturer in their right mind will create a "defective" new tire, which this lawsuit claims, and secondly the claim that Les Schwab had knowledge of it is frivolous.
That is the purpose of tire recalls, no matter if government forces a manufacturer to recall a tire, or if the manufacturer volunteers.
There have been very few Toyo tire recalls in all these years. I do not know how this could be claimed.
The fact is that tires will not last for an indefinite period of time, especially in non-use situations such as this case and was sold in the U.S. and taken to totally different environments and road conditions.
We replace damaged tires from various reasons quite often here in Ohio. That does not make a tire defective; in fact it is an engineering marvel to do what is demanded of them (tires).
We replace motor home tires that are aged eight to 10 years from manufacture date. Though with usually half tread or better remaining, the customer is aware of a life expectancy of a tire on their motor home not because of mile wear, but aging.
All tires have a clock that is ticking from the moment of creation (much like people), and it is a safety issue especially after eight or more years of service.
It is a shame and unfortunate circumstance of what happened to the Wilcox decision to place a knowingly bad and inflated tire in the front seat and on his wife's lap. Who of us would do such a thing?
It was a bomb. It is past time that accountability must be placed back where it belongs. The initial court issue should not have been on the statute of Oregon law, but on the negligence of the consumer.
Dave Richards, president
Canton Bandag Co.