Tire Tread Separation Blamed At Trial For Triple-Fatality Rollover Accident, Watch Online via CVN

Posted by David Siegel on Nov 15, 2022 1:16:47 PM

Garcia openings

CVN screenshot of plaintiff attorney Paul Kiesel, left, and defense attorney Dean Olson, right, delivering their opening statements

San Diego, CA - A California state court jury heard opening statements Monday in a lawsuit accusing a tire repair shop of responsibility for a triple-fatality rollover accident after allegedly not replacing a worn tire, and the full proceedings are being webcast gavel-to-gavel by Courtroom View Network.

Attorney Paul Kiesel of Kiesel Law LLP, representing family members of the three victims, told a San Diego County jury during his opening statement that Chuy’s Tire Service should have replaced the right rear tire on a 2001 Ford Expedition while it was in for service to have the left rear tire replaced.

Kiesel argued the right rear tire, which hadn’t been changed since the car was sold in 2001, later suffered a tread separation that led to the 2014 accident, but Dean Olson of Clark Hill maintained Chuy’s had no legal obligation to replace the tire.

The full trial is being webcast gavel-to-gavel by CVN, and subscribers to CVN’s online trial video library get unlimited live and on-demand access to the proceedings, along with unlimited access to hundreds of other civil trials featuring top plaintiff and defense attorneys from throughout the United States.

Check out 10 “must watch” automotive product liability trials in CVN’s video library, all included among many others with a monthly or yearly subscription.

Kiesel explained during his opening statement that the Expedition’s owner initially brought it in to have a leaky left rear tire replaced. Kiesel said Chuy’s sold him a replacement tire but also had a professional responsibility to recommend an aging factory original tire be replaced. 

“What the standard of care you’ll hear testified to here in this courtroom is that a tire professional has to look at all the tires,” Kiesel said.

He explained to jurors that all tires have a dating system on the outside of the tread that would have immediately indicated it was a factory original, and that the owner of Chuy’s testified in a deposition he would never sell a tire that old to a customer.

“This incident was totally completely preventable,” Kiesel said, without asking for a specific amount of damages in his opening statement. 

During his opening on behalf of Chuy’s, Olson told jurors there was no state or federal law that requiring Chuy’s to recommend the right rear tire be replaced. He said the Expedition’s owner initially asked for a quote for two tires but decided to only but one, and that Chuy’s simply provided what a customer requested.

“That tire did not cause the right rear tire to fail,” Olson said.   

Olson said the right rear tire, which had been used as a spare, failed due to internal damage that an external tread inspection would not reveal.

He also argued the used Expedition had issues with its steering and suspension and suggested those problems actually caused the rollover when the driver slammed on the brakes immediately after the tread separation.

The trial before Judge Cynthia Freeland is expected to take roughly a week to complete, and CVN’s coverage will continue for the duration of the proceedings.

The case is captioned Garcia v. Chuy’s Tire Service, case number 37-2017-00024480-CU-PO-NC in San Diego County Superior Court.

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Topics: automotive, California