In the state of Georgia, a multi-year civil case against Ford has ended, as a result of which the manufacturer was fined $1.7 billion. The jury named Ford as the main culprit of the fatal accident that occurred back in 2014 and claimed the lives of two people — Melvina and Wonsail Hill. The cause of their death was recognized as the too-soft roof of the 2002 Ford F250 Super Duty, which did not protect passengers when the pickup truck overturned.
In April 2014, Melvina and Wonsail were driving from the farm in an F-250 Super Duty pickup truck. Suddenly, the car’s tire burst, and it rolled over. Both the passenger and the driver died on the spot, as the roof of the pickup truck was not rigid enough and bent during the accident.
The lawsuit against Ford was filed by the children of the victims — Kim and Adam Hill. Their lawyers argued that the manufacturer deliberately put pickups on the market with too weak a roof, and therefore it is not just a private incident, but a lot of dangerous trucks released on the roads.
As a result of the protracted consideration of the case, which ended only last week, the jury placed 70 percent of the blame on Ford. They ruled that the auto giant was selling 5.2-meter Super Duty trucks with weak roofs that can crush people when tipping over.
And it lasted for a long time — from 1999 to 2016, the lawyers say. They also provided materials for about 80 similar rollover incidents, as a result of which motorists were killed or injured.
The remaining 30 percent of the blame was laid on the Pep Boys network of automotive service centers, in which tires of the wrong size were installed on the pickup truck.
The Hill family received compensation in the amount of $ 24 million. According to them, they initiated the case to warn drivers about the weak roofs of pickups and prevent fatal accidents. Ford denies guilt and intends to appeal in the hope of reducing or even completely canceling the impressive fine.
Source: The Guardian