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Ford Explorer Rollover fractured Spine, Death of US Army Soldier
Case description: On February 17, 1996 I was a passenger in a 1996 Ford Explorer, along with three others, that was equipped with firestone tires. The vehicle flipped over six times according to the accident report. The accident occured at about 4am in Deridder, Louisiana while on the way back from Beaumont, Texas. My good friend and fellow soldier, the driver of the vehicle, was killed in the accident. We were all active duty Army soldiers stationed at Fort Polk, LA. No one paid attention to the tires on the vehicle after the accident, although they were totally shriveled, because they were not known to cause accident as it is now known. The cause of the accident was never stated in the report. I remember viewing some pictures of the destroyed vehicle, after three weeks in the hospital, and observing how teribbly torn up the tires looked. I was asleep at the time of the accident and was awaken by a loud bang or pop followed by the starting of the flips. I was released fom the military as a result of my injury and lost a very close friend in the accident who was a Sergeant at the time, and whose parents and friends endured his death in harsh sorrows up to the present. I always wonder, and I am sure many others who knew of the accident do too, about what caused that accident and I truly believe my friend that died is now giving myself and all those who wondered an answer.
Carlisle El Monte, Ca
Submitted 6 September 2000

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