WASHINGTON (Sept. 20)—The number of fatalities linked to Firestone tires being investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has risen to 103, according to the latest NHTSA accounting of accident reports. The latest number is 15 higher than that reported Aug. 31, the last time the database was updated. The number of injuries reported rose more than 50 percent to more than 400 from about 250 in the last report. The number of accidents involving Firestone tires reported to NHTSA also was up more than 50 percent to 2,226. Details of eight of the fatalities are not included in the database because they came from Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. directly, and the company requested confidentially. NHTSA´s Office of Chief Council has since denied this request, but Bridgestone/Firestone has 10 working days to appeal the decision.