Michigan Attorney General Issues Consumer Alert

17 October 2000

Michigan Attorney General Granholm Issues Consumer Alert Regarding Options for Replacing Firestone Tires
    LANSING, Mich., Oct. 16 Attorney General Jennifer M.
Granholm, along with the Attorneys General from 48 other states and
territories in the Bridgestone/Firestone multi-state working group, today
alerted consumers with certain Firestone tires that they have replacement
options of which they may not be aware.  On September 1, 2000, the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a consumer advisory which
recommended replacement of a number of Firestone tires which were not included
in company's voluntary tire recall.
    Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc. will replace all tires listed on the NHTSA
consumer advisory free of charge if the tires are taken to an authorized
Bridgestone/Firestone dealer.  Tires will be replaced regardless of use and
condition and can even be replaced if not currently being used on a vehicle.
If a consumer prefers to replace consumer advisory tires with a competitor's
tires, Bridgestone/Firestone will reimburse the consumer up to $140.00 per
tire for any tire purchased to replace a tire listed on NHTSA's September 1,
2000, Consumer Advisory.
    Granholm said:  "I want to urge all consumers to replace any consumer
advisory tires as soon as possible.  You can either get free replacements at a
Bridgestone/Firestone dealer or obtain reimbursement up to $140.00 per tire if
you go to a competitor to have your tires replaced.  Your safety and your
peace of mind are paramount."
    If customers choose the replacement option at a Bridgestone/Firestone
dealer, tire replacement should be absolutely free to the consumer.  Consumers
will not be charged for mounting, balancing, valve stem, sales tax or disposal
fees for replacement tires.  If a customer previously had a road hazard
warranty or insurance, Bridgestone/Firestone will replace that warranty free
of charge when the replacement tire is installed.  Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc.
will replace consumer advisory tires for either individuals or companies, but
will select the brand and type of tires used as a replacement.  Authorized
Bridgestone/Firestone dealers can be located by visiting the store locator
section of the Bridgestone/Firestone web page at
http://www.bridgestone-firestone.com/ .
     Should consumers choose the $140.00 reimbursement option, the
reimbursement includes mounting, balancing, valve stem, sales tax and tire
disposal fees.  Consumers can elect the reimbursement option regardless of the
use or condition of the tires.  If a consumer previously had a road hazard
warranty, Bridgestone/Firestone will pay to replace the warranty on the new
tires.
    In order to be eligible for the reimbursement program, consumers must
return NHTSA's Consumer Advisory tires to an authorized Bridgestone/Firestone
retailer where appropriate forms to apply for reimbursement will be provided.
A consumer will also need an original receipt for the replacement tires to
attach to the reimbursement form.  It will likely take 4-6 weeks for a
consumer to receive the reimbursement from Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc.
    In addition, consumers do not have to waive any of their legal rights to
take advantage of the Bridgestone/Firestone tire replacement program.  At the
request of the Attorneys General, Bridgestone/Firestone has removed any such
language from its reimbursement forms.  Further, Bridgestone/Firestone has
agreed not to enforce any agreements consumers may have signed releasing them
from their legal rights on the recall or advisory forms previously signed by
consumers.
    Tires voluntarily recalled by Bridgestone/Firestone are also subject to
free replacement by a Bridgestone/Firestone dealer or reimbursement of up to
$100.00 dollars when a competitor's tires are purchased.  More information
about identifying recalled and advisory tires, and Bridgestone/Firestone's
explanation of the process is available at
http://www.bridgestone-firestone.com/.
    


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