A jury awarded a tire-tread separation accident victim more than $55 million, her mother more than $5.5 million, and her father $1 million after finding that tire manufacturer Continental General Tire’s product caused the 1996 rollover accident that led to Cynthia Lampe’s catastrophic injury. Brian Panish and Adam Shea of Panish Shea & Boyle LLP represented Lampe, who sustained a spinal cord injury that caused her to become paralyzed and wheelchair-confined.
While the jury did not find a design defect that led to the tire tread separating, it did determine that the manufacturing process used to produce the tire was defective, and thus led to causing the car accident. On June 26, 1996, Lampe was driving her Ford Taurus from Los Angeles to Las Vegas when the tread on the left rear tire of her vehicle separated, causing the motorist to lose control of the car, crash into an embankment, and rollover.
While the defense argued that the tread separation was the result of some sort of roadway impact that occurred as many as 1,500 miles prior to the accident taking place, the jury failed to agree that the tread separation was caused by anything but a manufacturing defect. As a result of the accident, Lampe is now a quadriplegic dependent on others to perform basic tasks for her.
Lampe vs. Continental General Tire Case Articles:
Has Firestone fallout created a “tour du jour” with tires as the main course?Verdicts of the Year
Tire separation case comes in at $55 million.Lampe v. Continental General Tire – #37
The National Law Journal ranks Lampe v. Continental General Tire #37 in the Largest Verdicts of 2001.
A jury orders Continental General to pay $55 million for a defect that caused a rollover. The verdict is believed to be the largest involving tread-separation failure.
Jury Find for Quadriplegic in First Verdict Following Tire RecallParalyzed Woman Testifies in Case Against Tire Company
Attorney Brian J. Panish represents a woman who suffered debilitating injuries in 1996 when the tread of one of her car tires separated…Jury Awards $55 Million to Quadriplegic in Tire Blowout
An L.A. jury finds defects in the tire, which suffered a tread separation and caused the plaintiff’s auto accident.
Other Publications:The Dallas Morning News
A Los Angeles jury ordered Continental General Tire to pay a quadriplegic woman $54.9 million Friday for injuries she suffered in 1996 from a tire blowout.Trials Digest Publishing Part 1 Part 2
Driver claims defective tires were the cause of her single-vehicle accident.El Paso Times
A jury ordered Continental General Tire on Friday to pay $55.4 million to a Las Vegas woman and her parents for an auto accident involving a tire tread separation.Verdicts & Settlements
Whistle-blowers’ testimony helped Brian J. Panish convince a jury that a tire manufacturer knowingly used potentially dangerous materials in its product.The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., Washington, D.C.
Contamination Came After Manufacture.Lampe Verdict Form (PDF)
Lampe v. Continental General Tire Verdict Form.