Ford Steering Defect Prompts Recall
The parade of serous recalls for major safety problems continues, with the revelation that on Thursday, May 29, Ford Motor Co. announced a recall of nearly 1.4 million sport-utility vehicles (SUVs) throughout the U.S. and Canada for several issues that could result in the loss of power steering suddenly. The company had previously claimed that some of the SUVs needed no repair. The recall was compelled by Transport Canada.
The current SUV recall covers certain Explorer models from 2011 through 2013. In those vehicles, Ford will replace a faulty electrical connection that can shut off the power steering, and it will also fix several steering defects. The recall will also cover Escape and Mariner models from 2008 through 2011, to replace a faulty sensor that cause a loss of power steering and which can make the SUVs more difficult to control.
This recall comes nearly a year after safety officials at Ford refused to recall 2011 Explorers for the same problems. This, despite numerous complaints by drivers in the U.S. In a letter to the NHTSA from Ford in June 2013, the company claimed that a loss of power steering “does not present an unreasonable safety risk in these vehicles.”
The number of vehicles recalled for defects in 2014 appear to be a cinch to surpass the total of 27.9 million vehicles recalled in 2013. Even at today’s pace, however, it is unlikely that 2014 will top the record year for recalls, which was 1999. That year, about 55.6 million vehicles were recalled.
Some auto safety experts are suggesting that the recent spate of recalls suggests that a more aggressive approach by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and other federal authorities have led auto makers to fix problems they had previously tried to address without implementing widespread safety campaigns, and attracting attention to themselves.
One major factor would have to be the heavy fines that have been imposed. Back in March, Toyota settled a federal criminal investigation into fraud allegations related to their attempts to put off recalls for sudden acceleration defects. That cost the company $1.2 billion. In early May, GM agreed to settle a civil complaint over defects that it had put off for nearly a decade. The settlement cost that company $35 million.
If you have one of these Ford SUVs, follow the instructions for the recall, and have the problem repaired as soon as possible. This is a potentially dangerous defect. If you or a loved one have been injured or killed in an accident, and the accident was due to a vehicle defect, please contact the knowledgeable and experienced Texas Automobile Defect Attorney at Hill Law Firm as soon as you can, so that you can protect your rights under the law.