Retailers Replaced 200,000+ Recalled Tires in 5 Days
17 August 2000Bridgestone/Firestone Recall Expected to Be Completed Ahead of Schedule
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Five working days into its voluntary tire recall, Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc., already has replaced more than 200,000 tires for customers across the United States, is doubling its production of replacement tires and has shortened its schedule for completing the recall. "We are doing everything we can to replace the recalled tires as fast as possible, and it's clear that we are making progress in our efforts to satisfy our customers and assure their safety," said Christine Karbowiak, vice president of public affairs, Bridgestone Firestone, Inc. "The number of tires we've already replaced demonstrates our commitment to our customers." Based on the swift acceleration of production and responsiveness of retailers, Karbowiak said the company should complete the recall sometime next spring, instead of next summer as previously projected. On August 9, Bridgestone/Firestone voluntarily recalled all Firestone P235/75R15 Radial ATX and Radial ATX II tires made in North America, and P235/75R15 Wilderness AT tires made at the Decatur, Ill., plant. Bridgestone/Firestone's U.S. plants are doubling the number of tire molds and already are producing about 7,000 more tires a day than they were a week ago. In addition, the company is increasing imports and its retailers are purchasing competitors' tires to augment their supply. Customers can go to get their tires replaced at any of more than 1,500 authorized Bridgestone/Firestone-owned stores and service centers, 8,500 authorized Bridgestone/Firestone dealer locations and 2,900 Ford/Lincoln Mercury dealers. This amounts to nearly 13,000 places around the country at which customers can be helped. "We are very pleased to pass the 200,000 tire mark in the first five days, and we are continuing to increase production and imports so even more tires can be delivered to our retailers," said Karbowiak. "This is just the beginning, but it is a very good beginning to this recall."