In Sept. 2010, two teen cousins died in eastern Collier County after a Cooper Discoverer HT tire blew out and allegedly caused the Ford Explorer they were passengers in to careen out of control and rollover.
The families of the teens filed product liability lawsuits, alleging that Ford and Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. designed and manufactured defective products. The families also named New Life Tire Centers of Bonita Springs in the suits, claiming that the company sold them old tires that were made in 2001 just three months before the crash.
The Florida Highway Patrol reported that the teens, who were ejected from the SUV, were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash, but an attorney attached to one of the suits claims that Ford Explorer seat belts have been known to fail.
According to Naplesnews.com, court records reveal finger pointing all around. Ford blames the teens for not wearing seat belts, Cooper for manufacturing a defective tire, and New Life for selling an old tire that was improperly installed. Cooper blames Ford and New Life and has suggested that other vehicles may have caused the accident -not a tire blow out as claimed.
Ford has a long history of litigation brought against it relating to Explorer rollovers. In 2005, a Miami jury awarded $61.2 million to the family of a teen killed in an Explorer rollover crash. In 2010, an Iowa jury awarded $32.8 million to a family that claimed a defective Cooper tire caused a minivan crash that left one person dead and five seriously injured.
Product liability lawsuits can be complex. They require the expert skills of an experienced and established law firm that knows the ins and outs of product liability litigation. The product liability lawyers at Farah & Farah have over two decades of product liability litigation experience and pledge to work tirelessly to see that our clients’ best interests are served. If you think you have a product liability case, call us (800) 533-3555 for a free case review.