Pressure from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has prompted
Ford to expand its voluntarily recall of F-150 pickup trucks to 1.2 million
vehicles. The recall is over concerns that the air bag may deploy unexpectedly.
Ford issued the original recall last February, involving 144,000 F-150′s
(2005 and 2006 models). The automaker says that an electric short circuit
could make the airbags deploy suddenly and unnecessarily. Truck owners
should take their vehicles to a dealer to have the air bag wiring replaced.
At the time, the NHTSA said that Ford needed to recall times more autos over the possible air bag defect. The federal agency says that number of incidents involving inadvertent air bag deployments—at least 269—was the largest in its history and some 98 injuries had been reported. Ford, however, said that to recall more wouldn’t have been “common sense” and that the 144,000 pickups it had recalled were the ones with the highest failure rates (they were built at Ford’s now-closed factory in Norfolk, Virginia). NHTSA, however, remained persistent, accusing the automaker of skewing the data and dismissing its claim that a warning light notifying drivers there was a problem would suffice.
This week, Ford recalled the other vehicles, which now also includes Lincoln Mark LT trucks (2006 models). However, the automaker did not admit that the air bag issue is an auto defect. The New York Times says that since Ford changed the air bags’ wiring in 2006, an admission would indicate that it knew about the defect then, which would mean that the automaker had violated federal regulations. The law requires that a car manufacturer report a safety defect within five days of its discovery.
Ford is now recalling F-150 pickup trucks (2004 – 2006 models) that were made in its Kansas City, Missouri and Dearborn, Michigan factories. The auto manufacturer’s F-series of pickup trucks is the number one selling motor vehicle in the US.
Air Bag Injuries
Although designed to protect passengers, air bags that deploy can cause serious injuries, especially when they don’t inflate correctly or at the right time. Examples of air bag-related injuries:
- Eye injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Chest injuries
- Internal trauma
- Amputated fingers
Our auto products liability lawyers represent clients who have been injured
because an airbag was defective or malfunctioned.
Ford recall affects 1.2 million trucks, The Christian Science Monitor, April 14, 2011
Ford expands recall of F-150 pickup truck to about 1.2 million vehicles, Los Angeles Times, April 14, 2011
Ford recalls 144,000 F-150 trucks for airbag risk, Reuters, February 23, 2011
Related Web Resources:
Air Bags, NHTSA
Contact our air bag defect lawyers today.