Remember the Firestone recall in 2001? That’s when Ford Explorers were rolling off the road, injuring or killing drivers and passengers; meanwhile, Ford and Firestone were blaming each other. Now, 13 years later, Ford’s ex-public relations chief has a new book that sheds light on that debacle.
In Jason Vines’ What Did Jesus Drive? Crisis PR in Cars, Computers and Christianity, he claims that someone at Ford told him that his office had been bugged around the time of the recall. He also alleges that he might not have been the only one (who was bugged), as then-general counsel John Rintamaki also believed he was being “watched.”
According to The Detroit News, recording Vines without his knowledge is a felony under Michigan law.
Vines also accuses Bill Ford, Jr. of leaking some advance information to The New York Times during the tire recall, also accusing Ford of investigating the journalist working on an article about the Explorer/Firestone issue.
Since working at Ford, Vines was Vice President of Communications at Chrysler Group between 2003-2007, then accepted a communications position for the Christian publishing division of HarperCollins.