Ford Motor Co. is expanding its recall of 575,000 Windstar vehicles to include another 37,000 minivans. According to the Associated Press, the expansion of the recall comes after the family of Sean Bowman complained that the automaker didn’t do enough warn about the initial recall, which involved older Windstars and concerns that the vans’ rear axles might corrode and break.
Bowman, 28 was killed in a single-vehicle crash last October when he lost
control of his 2001 Ford WIndstar and rammed into the side of a building.
Critically injured in the accident was his girlfriend. Bowman leaves behind
two young daughters, ages 4 and 7. His family says that they did not receive
a safety recall notice from Ford until one week after the tragic traffic
collision and more than six weeks after the recall was announced in August.
They are considering filing a Massachusetts auto products liability lawsuit
against Ford over his wrongful death.
Federal law requires car manufacturers let vehicle owners know about a
recall “within a reasonable amount of time.” Usually, owners
are notified about a recall within 30 days.
While the original recall affected 1998 to 2003 model Windstars in certain
US states and Canada, where heavy road salt can cause rust to appear on
the axles and crack-related corrosions to cause axle breakage, the expanded
recall adds 2003 Windstars that come with heat-treated axles, as well
as vans in Utah where road salt is used. Ford says that its latest figures
show that as of September, there have been at least seven accidents linked
to the axle defect that have resulted in injuries—although the automaker
says that none of the injuries are serious. It has received some 950 complaints
about the axles.
Ford says that it has been looking through state motor vehicle registration
databases to search for WIndstar owners affected by the recall. Notifications
of the expanded recall started to go out last week.
Minivan recall grows as victim’s family speaks out, Forbes, December 15, 2010
Minivan Recall Grows As Victim’s Family Speaks Out, NPR/AP, December 15, 2010
Whitman, Mass. police investigate deadly car crash into building, NECN, October 15, 2010
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