The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 30, 2000 - 5A
Tire companies will preserve
recalle tires for evidence
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Bridgestone/Fire-
stone Inc. has agreed to preserve a certain num-
ber of its recalled and returned tires as potential
evidence in lawsuits against the company, a key
attorney in the cases said yesterday.
The deal struck with the tire maker is tenta-
tive, said Victor Diaz, one of the lead coun-
sels for plaintiffs. He said attorneys for both
sides hope to reach a final agreement on pre-
serving tires for use as evidence before a
scheduled court hearing Dec. 6.
Plaintiffs' attorneys want to prove that
defects like those linked to accidents across
the nation were not limited to the tire models
covered by the company's massive recall.
A Bridgestone/Firestone spokeswoman
confirmed the two sides have struck a tenta-
tive agreement, but said she could not con-
firm its scope.
U.S. District Court Judge Sarah Evans
Barker on Nov. 17 ordered the company to
stop shredding recalled tires until both sides
could agree on how to save some for evi-
dence. The recalled tires were being sent to
recyclers by nine Firestone distribution cen-
ters in the United States.
The individual tires being recycled were
not linked to any specific injury cases and
were being shredded as part of Firestone's
normal recycling program, company spokes-
woman Karen Doyne said.
About 160 cases from around the country,
many of them involving allegations of injury
or death, have been consolidated in federal
court in Indianapolis.
Many of the lawsuits allege that Bridge-
stone/Firestone's Aug. 9 recall of 6.5 million
ATX, ATX II and Wilderness AT tires - most
of them used on the Ford Explorer - was not
broad enough to include all defective models.
Bridgestone/Firestone spokesman Julius
Turman said Firestone and plaintiffs' attor-
neys reached an interim agreement Nov. 21
to set aside two out of every 100 recalled
tires as potential evidence. About 20,000
other tires also were being preserved as part
of the pact.
Diaz, the lead plaintiff's counsel, said
lawyers hope to reach a final agreement on
preserving the tires before a Dec. 6 attorneys
conference in Barker's court.
Besides tires returned through the recall,
Diaz said plaintiffs' lawyers also wanted
Firestone to set aside all the tires that are
returned through customer satisfaction pro-
grams so some of those also can be tested
"There is no data showing any problems
with ATX or Wilderness tires outside of thQ
recalled tires,' Doyne said.
Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt discusses the possibility of designating Pompeys Pillar a National
Historic Monument while visiting the site yesterday afternoon.
Continued from Page 1A
em space, information technology,
library resources and laboratory facili-
ties; and availability of student services.
We do not anticipate any significant
increases in our overall enrollment over
the coming years," University Provost
Nancy Cantor said.
Jessica Curtin, a Rackham student
and member of the Coalition to
Defend Affirmative Action By Any
Means Necessary, said the increased
derrepresented minority numbers in
freshman class was achieved by the
work of students. "This was won by the
public campaign run by the students"
Curtin said the University would not
have seen a decrease in the overall num-
bers if it concentrated harder on the
retention of minority students.
Sabrina Charles, an LSA senior
and speaker for the Black Student
on said the current totals are not
a a number representative of the
total of African Americans across
"I'd like to see the day when black
students are not an underrepresented
minority, but a large and significant part
of the population,"Charles said.
Charles said she commends pro-
grams that work to retain minority stu-
dents. "But, to be successful they need
more finances and resources," he said.
Darren Goetz, co-chairman of the
Native American Student Associa-
tion and an LSA and Engineering
senior, said the University does not
do anything to recruit Native Ameri-
can students to the University. "The
University used to have someone
from admissions go to Native Amer-
ican high schools. There are a lot of
Native American students out there,
but now they have to do it them-
selves," Goetz said.
Goetz said he would like to see the
University increase their effort in
recruiting Native American students,
which currently make up only 6 percent
of the University's population.
"I look at it in terms of Native Amen-
cans in Michigan. I'm pretty sure the
state population is definitely higher than
the school's population," Goetz said.
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