Economy

Ford recalling millions of trucks over fire concerns in seat-belt system

Ford recalling millions of trucks over fire concerns in seat-belt system”

After learning of reports of faulty pretensioners, the company launched an investigation and found that some front ones can generate excessive sparks when they deploy. In turn, it can "ignite gases inside a support pillar between the front and rear seats, causing insulation and carpet to catch fire", the report states.

Ford said it was aware of 17 instances of smoke or fire from the device in the USA and another six instances in Canada. No injuries have been reported.

Ford said the recall included 1.62 million US vehicles, 340,000 in Canada and 37,000 in Mexico.

Unfortunately, the pretensioners in certain Ford F-150 models produced since 2014-about two million in total-are at risk of starting a fire. Affected F-150 owners can contact their local Ford dealers for repairs, which will be done at no cost to customers.

"Dealers will remove insulation material from the B-pillar trim, remove remnants of wiring harness tape in the B-pillar area, and apply heat-resistant tape to the carpet and its insulation", the recall explains.

The recall, which covers trucks from the 2015 through 2018 model years, comes about one month after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began investigating fires in the pickups, which are the top-selling vehicles in the United States.

Pretensioners hold the seat belt tight when sensors detect a sudden deceleration, as occurs in a crash. The B-pillar in question is found between the doors, and separates the front and back seat area of the auto. The trucks also compromise Ford's most profitable product line, according to company data.

This is potentially risky as Ford says if enough sparks are created, then "gases exhausted inside the lower portion of the B-pillar ... may ignite".



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