Case Study - Ford and Firestone's Tire Recall: the Costliest Information Gap in History

Topics: Tire, Bridgestone, Firestone Tire and Rubber Company Pages: 4 (859 words) Published: January 7, 2013
Case Study #1

Ford and Firestone's Tire Recall: The Costliest Information Gap in History

1.Briefly summarize the problems and major issues in this case. To what extent was this crisis an information management problem? What role did databases and data management play?

These are the problems and major issues that I found in this case: •46 deaths and more than 300 accidents
A confidential memo sent by Firestone to Ford claiming that everything was fine •Ford recall in 16 countries but not in US and also did not notify the safety regulators(NHTSA) •Disagreement about the tire inflation pressure(Ford recommended 26-30 psi, while Firestone recommended 30 psi) •Firestone plant was “rife with quality control problems”. •Firestone expressed “major reservations” about a Ford plan to replace Firestone tires overseas •Ford said it was under obligation to report overseas recalls •Ford did not have warranty data on tire recalls

The New York Times found that fatal crashes involving Ford Explorers were almost three times the as likely to be tire related as fatal crashes involving other sport utility vehicles •Department of Transportation did not have enough funding to track all data •Sue Bailey NHTSA Head said, ”Our testing is clearly outdated” •Yoichiro Kaizaki CEO of Bridgestone resigned on January 2001 •A group personal injury lawyers identified a pattern of failures in 1996, but did not report to NHTSA until 2000

The information or data was available, but those information were not shared and were very difficult to gather thus making it a problem for information management. The databases and management of data played a huge role on this certain crisis. It affected them dearly because several databases were isolated, thus making it very difficult to detect a trend. There were no ways to share data resulting to the incompleteness of their data tracking collection.

2.Explain why the growing trend of deaths was not spotted for a...
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