DETROIT (AP) -- Safety advocates are urging Ford Motor Co. and Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. to broaden the Firestone tire recall, saying the same problems that have been reported with the 15-inch tires affect other sizes of the three recalled tire models.
Company officials say their actions were sufficient and that the overwhelming majority of complaints were from the tires being recalled. Ford and Bridgestone/Firestone say their data show the problems are limited to the models under recall.
Nevertheless, many accused the companies Monday of dangerously limiting the recall.
"The public can afford no further delay in getting these tires off the road," said Joan Claybrook, head of the group Public Citizen and a former administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Bridgestone/Firestone said last week it would recall all of the P235/75R15 size radial ATX and ATX II tires, and Wilderness AT tires of the same size made in Decatur, Ill.
Most of the reports of tire failure have involved tread separating from the tire, sometimes at high speed, causing blowouts and rollovers. Ford and Bridgestone/Firestone have not offered a theory for the failures, but have said hot weather plays a role.
Claybrook charged that too many unanswered questions remain about the safety of Bridgestone/Firestone's 16-inch tires. She contended that the problem is a design defect.
But Christine Karbowiak, vice president of public affairs for Bridgestone/Firestone, said, "Anyone and any group can make unsubstantiated allegations, but the data ... shows the tires are good quality tires with a good record of safety."
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