Nearly five years ago, a couple was killed when their SUV rolled over on Highway 98. The SUV wasn't hit by another vehicle. The driver of the SUV did nothing wrong. In fact, the accident was not caused by anyone or anything on the road that day.
Instead, the rollover accident was caused by tire tread separation on one of the SUV's tires. That tire should have been replaced during maintenance that was performed by Mossy Ford in August 2005. Because the company failed to perform the tire maintenance properly, the couple was killed in this accident. Earlier this week, a California jury awarded significant wrongful death damages to the sons of the couple that was killed.
The jury trial was the culmination of a five-year-long ordeal for this family. The jury not only found that Mossy Ford was liable for the accident that caused the couple's death. They also awarded the family millions of dollars in damages. Together with pre-trial settlements in this case, the verdict makes it San Diego County's largest wrongful death compensation.
In addition to the financial compensation, Mossy Ford will now need to follow better procedures when performing tire repairs. This couple died because a Mossy Ford employee failed to properly repair and maintain the tire on their vehicle. Now, Mossy Ford will need to follow industry guidelines for tire repair. They will also need to ensure that every employee is properly trained to follow those guidelines. The new requirements are aimed at preventing more accidents and deaths caused by similar oversights.
This San Diego County wrongful death lawsuit highlights the devastating consequences when tires are not properly maintained. Hopefully, the large damages award will inspire other car repair shops to follow proper tire repair procedures.
Source: 10 News, "Jury Recommends $14M in Ford Rollover Case," 11 Jan 2011