The lawsuit filed by two California RV owners against the manufacturer of Steeltex tires won’t become a national class-action case as a result of a Riverside County, Calif., judge’s ruling earlier this week.
However, the attorney for the RV owners plans to file similar suits in federal court in Los Angeles and in Arizona, Colorado, Texas, New Mexico and Florida state courts, according to The Tennessean of Nashville, Tenn.
A lawsuit in Washington, D.C., also is planned.
The Riverside County case was filed in August 2002 against Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire, manufacturer of the Steeltex brand, which is standard equipment on many RVs, large pickups, SUVs and ambulances.
The RV owners said they experienced Steeltex tire failures and, in their lawsuit, they allege Bridgestone/Firestone knew the tires were defective but did nothing to correct the situation.
Joseph Lisoni, attorney for the RV owners and other plaintiffs, stated in the lawsuit that a cost-cutting program instituted in 1995 by Nashville-based Bridgestone/Firestone resulted in defects in all Steeltex tires.
However, Riverside County Superior Court Judge Christopher Sheldon ruled on Wednesday (March 17) there was not enough evidence presented by owners of Steeltex tires to combine itheir cases into a single, national class-action case.
A Bridgestone/Firestone spokesman told the Associated Press 100 kinds of Steeltex tires have been manufactured to 300 different specifications since 1991. Consequently, the issues in the various plaintiffs’ lawsuits were not similar enough to be merged into one case, the company spokesman said.
The judge agreed saying that at least 38 different types of Steeltex tires were involved in the cases before him.