DETROIT- LongIslandNews12.com* reports that Ford has issued a recall of around 2 million F-150 pickup trucks because they are equipped with seatbelts that can cause fires. The auto manufacturer chose to issue the recall because of pressure placed on it from the UnitedStates safety regulators.
The recall applies truck models from 2015 through 2018. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) started investigating fires in the pickup trucks about one month prior to the recall being issued. The F-150 is one of the best-selling vehicles in the UnitedStates.
On Thursday, September 6, 2018, Ford released a statement admitting that they were aware of 23 fire or smoke reports in connection to the F-150 in Canada and the United States. Ford said that no injuries hadbeen reported in relation to the issue. The NHTSA stated that they received 5 reports regarding the trucks catching fire, and in three of the reports, the cars were destroyed. The NHTSA then started to investigate the seatbelt issue in early August of 2018.
The issue appears to be that when the vehicles are involved in a collision, the seatbelts tighten and can “generate excessive sparks.” The sparks can cause gases within a support pillar to catch fire, which in turn ignites the carpet and insulation.
Ford dealers will repair the defect by removing insulation and installing heat-resistant tape.
One owner was involved in a minor accident with a deer. The airbags deployed and a passenger in the vehicle noticed a fire located between the front and rear doors near the seatbelts. The entire truck caught fire within minutes and was completely destroyed.
Ford stated that the recall wouldcost the company about $140 million.
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