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10-19-06_ford_crash

A California jury has awarded a woman $23.4 million in a civil judgment against Ford Motor Co. for a 2007 freeway accident that left her a quadriplegic.

Cynthia Castillo lost control of her 1997 Ford Explorer when the tread separated from her left-rear tire as she was driving.

Her attorney, Brian Brandt, says the SUV veered off the freeway and rolled three times down an embankment, leaving Castillo’s legs and most of her body paralyzed. Brandt says flaws in the vehicle’s design causes it to lose control when the tire tread separates.

An attorney for Ford says the accident was caused by a worn-out tire.

A jury returned Thursday with a unanimous verdict in Castillo’s favor.

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