Consumer Advocates Urge Wider Firestone Recall

Consumer groups are calling for a wider recall of Firestone tires, alleging that
fundamental design problems affect more than the 6.5 million tires already replaced. They
urged Firestone, Ford, and federal regulators to act quickly to recall another 10 million
tires before the summer, when heat can worsen tire problems. Public Citizen and plaintiff
lawyer research group Safetyforum.com both said a voluntary recall announced last August
should have included all 15-inch Wilderness AT tires regardless of where they were made —
and the 16-inch version as well. “Based on an analysis of all of the available evidence,
the tires fail because they are poorly designed,” said a report by the two groups that is
being forwarded to NHTSA. Firestone said its own data, based on customer claims against the
tires, backed the scope of its recall. The tire maker says it received 165 claims for
15-inch Wilderness tires from Decatur out of 3.4 million made. By comparison, the Wilson
plant had 31 claims on 3.3 million made.

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