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Heaton v. Ford Motor Co.

Oregon Supreme Court
435 P.2d 806 (1967)


Facts

Heaton (plaintiff) purchased a new Ford truck for regular, every day driving on the roadways and for use in hunting and other off-road activities. While driving on a highway at normal speed, Heaton’s truck hit a rock about five or six inches in diameter. The truck operated normally for about 35 miles thereafter, but then suddenly left the road and tipped over. It was later learned that the rim of one of the truck’s wheels was separated from the “spider” – the interior portion of the wheel that is attached to the rim. There was also a large dent in the rim and a five-inch cut in the inner tube at a spot within the tire that was adjacent to the dent in the rim. Heaton sued Ford Motor Company (Ford) (defendant) claiming the truck was defective. The trial court entered a judgment of involuntary nonsuit against Heaton, and Heaton appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Goodwin, J.)

Dissent (O’Connell, J.)

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