LOS ANGELES -- The families of three Los Angeles couples killed last year in a rollover accident sued Ford Motor Co. and Continental Tire Co. on Tuesday, claiming the companies failed to correct product defects that caused the accident.
The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, said the couples died on May 18, 2002 after a General Grabber tire on their Ford Expedition failed on a San Bernardino County highway.
The blowout caused the vehicle to roll over, decapitating at least one of the Expedition's occupants and mangling others, the lawsuit said.
The victims' relatives contend that both companies knew that the Continental tire was prone to tread separation and that the Expedition had a "dangerous" oversteer defect in the event of a tire blowout.
Ford is the world's No. 2 automaker and Continental Tire is a unit of Germany's Continental AG, the fourth largest tire manufacturer globally.