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Ford Recalls 230,000 Vehicles Because of Engine Fire Dangers: What You Need to Know

Posted By Regan Zambri Long, PLLC || 8-May-2017

On March 29, Ford Motor Company raised concerns among consumers when it recalled 230,000 vehicles in March over the risk of engine fires.

According to an official statement by Ford, the recall affects several models:

  • 2014 Ford Escape
  • 2014-15 Ford Fiesta ST
  • 2013-14 Ford Fusion
  • 2013-15 Ford Transit Connect

In these vehicles, per the company’s account, a lack of coolant circulation can heat up the engine so much that the cylinder head cracks, creating opportunities for what are known as “pressurized oil leaks.” Essentially, oil gets ejected onto the surface of the scalding hot engine and ignites a fire inside the compartment. While no injuries have been reported to date, Ford says at least 29 vehicles have caught fire so far.

Perhaps most disturbing is the following quote from Ford’s statement:

“Customers can continue to drive their vehicles, but should see their dealer if their vehicle exhibits a coolant leak, overheating or frequently needs coolant.”

By failing to provide an immediate solution or recommending that owners immediately return the cars to the dealers for service, this part of the statement seems to downplay the dangers to consumers who are driving these cars. Vehicle fires are an ongoing threat, killing and injuring thousands of people on the roads each year. The National Fire Protection Association reports that in 2015 alone, 174,000 vehicle fires occurred nationwide, causing 445 deaths and more than 1,500 injuries.

Protecting Yourself Against Manufacturer Defects

No recall should be ignored. What can you do to make sure your vehicle is safe?

  • Check the manufacturer's website. Many manufacturers, including Ford, allow you to search for recalls via your car's VIN number.
  • If your vehicle has been subject to a recall, take it to the dealer for servicing as soon as possible. Protect yourself (and others on the road), and make sure your vehicle runs efficiently. Don’t cut corners.
  • Don't take the manufacturer’s word at face value. If you suspect that your car is unsafe to drive, don't drive it, even if the maker says you can. Do your due diligence.

For more information on vehicle safety, see our blog post on Six Car Safety Sensors that Could Save Your Life.

If you have been injured in a vehicle due to manufacturer defects, our Washington D.C. personal injury attorneys may be able to help. Call our office to learn more.

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