The people in the car were traveling from Nevada to Kansas when a tire blew out and the vehicle overturned on an Interstate highway in 2004.
The suit was filed by the surviving relatives and guardians of the children against Goodyear, Ford Motor Company and Valley View Hitch and Truck Rental. The trial found that Goodyear failed to produce a witness and gave improper responses to interrogatories. As a sanction, the court ruled that Goodyear could not present a defense of liability but only could argue to the jury the amount of compensatory damages and if it was subject to punitive damages.
The jury did return a $32.2 million verdict, but no punitive damages. The Plaintiff’s also appealed the judge’s decision that they would have to establish liability to receive punitive damages.