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“I have been prosecuting serious injury and wrongful death cases against trucking companies, auto makers and tire manufacturers for more than 30 years. Our firm maintains this blog to share information and insight on transportation safety issues that continue to arise on our nation’s highways and roads.”

Tread Separation and Unstable Truck Design Blamed for Rollover


Plaintiffs Inaudito Doe, a 37-year-old manual laborer, and Jose Smith, a 19-year-old manual laborer, were passengers in a 1998 Ford Ranger pickup truck traveling on Interstate 35 West in Denton.  The right rear Firestone Cornell steel-belted 40 tire, size P205/75R14M/S, allegedly suffered tread separation, resulting in loss of control and ultimately roll-over of the truck, according to plaintiff attorney Robert E. Ammons.

Ammons claims the truck is unstable, especially in the event of a tire failure, contributing to the severity of the accident.  No blowout occurred, but approximately 25% of the tread and a corresponding portion of the steel belt were thrown off.  Analysis of the tire indicated that had the tire been properly manufactured, the tire would not have failed in this manner.


Both Doe and Smith were killed.   Doe suffered a fractured skull, cerebellar and brain stem lacerations, and diffuse intra cranial hemorrhage.  Smith sustained pulmonary contusions, vascular lacerations and hemothoraces, lacerated spleen and intra cranial hemorrhage.

Does’s wife and children, and Smith’s parents made claims for termination of the familial relationships and loss of love, comfort, companionship and society.  They also sought compensation for emotional pain and torment they have experienced and will continue to experience in connection with the deaths of the two men.

The surviving parents of Doe also sought compensation for the past pain and suffering their son, endured from the time of injury until his death, shortly thereafter.

RESULT: A confidential settlement was reached at mediation with both Bridgestone/Firestone and Ford Motor Co. for all the plaintiffs’ claims.

If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence of others, contact the Houston tire defect attorneys at The Ammons Law Firm today for a free consultation.

Rob Ammons is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, in addition to being Board Certified in Civil Law by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Rob Ammons’ law practice, The Ammons Law Firm, is located in Houston, Texas. The Ammons Law Firm practice is exclusively personal injury law, handling such cases as tire defects, oil rig explosions, truck accidents, plant explosions, refinery accidents, wrongful death, post-collision fires, seat belt defects, airbag defects, SUV rollovers, and workplace negligence.

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