While there's a risk of fire after an accident, it's not something we expect from a supposedly perfectly functioning vehicle. Even though newer vehicles are using alternate power sources like batteries, automobiles have been historically powered by gasoline, a fuel source designed to burn incredibly efficiently and quickly. Car manufacturers pride themselves on creating the safest vehicles, citing numerous crash safety ratings on their advertisements, but how often do their products need to be recalled due to combustion hazards?
- 1996 Ford Recall: Several class-action lawsuits and public pressure pushed the Ford Motor Company torecall around 8.7 million cars and trucks in April 1996, the largest recall by a single auto maker ever at the time. According to numerous complaints, the issue with the majority of Ford's vehicles from model years 1988 to 1992, as well as a few early 1993 models, was with the ignition switches, which had the chance to short circuit and start a fire. According to Jon F. Harmon, a spokesman for Ford at the time, the recall only occurred after news articles about Canadian safety authorities ordering a recall of 248,000 vehicles provoked a spurt of complaints.
- 2007, 2009, and 2014 GM Recalls: It took three separate recalls to deal with an issue in GM vehicles that caused oil to leak onto a hot manifold in the engine. According to GM, the leaks occurred after "hard braking," and GM spokesman Alan Adler said that around 85 percent of the fires happened when the vehicles were shut off with no one around. In their second attempt at a recall, GM included in the recall letter that they strongly recommended "you not park your vehicle in a garage, car port or other structure."
- 2015 Fiat Chrysler Recall: 2015 just wasn't a good year for Fiat Chrysler. In over 40 different recalls, the company was forced to recall about 12 million vehicles, including 570,000 SUVs for being at risk of catching fire. According to Fiat Chrysler, the issue was related to problems with a low-pressure hose and vanity mirror wiring. The overheating was reported in a number of vehicles serviced in a prior recall, and according to the company, if the recall procedure was "not followed precisely, may leave vehicles susceptible to a short-circuit, creating a potential fire hazard."
- 2010 Ferrari Recall: Even the most high-end cars are at risk of fire. Ferrari recalled 1,248 of their 458 Italia model cars in 2010 in order to replace an adhesive that was used in the wheel-arch assemblies that, if it overheats, can ignite. The recall was prompted when five of their cars caught fire in California, China, Paris, Switzerland, and another unnamed location.
Unfortunately, vehicle recalls due to fire hazards aren't a new phenomenon. If you or a loved one was injured due to a vehicle fire, you may be eligible for compensation. At the Wyatt Law Firm, Ltd., our San Antonio personal injury attorneys are prepared to handle your case. Contact us today through our website, or call us at (210) 702-2162 for your free legal claim evaluation.