Ford F150s grab headlines with gas tank fires as new spate of vehicle recalls afflicts Las Vegas automobiles
If you ask your nearest Hollywood-movie skeptic, he’ll wear out your eardrums with critiques of easily shattering windows, extraordinarily accurate pistol skills (among heroes, not villains), and any of a number of jaw-dropping stunts so familiar from today’s action movies. But if the conversation turns to the far-fetched notion of gas tanks exploding from automobile accidents, you’ll have some fodder for a counterargument. This week has seen yet another series of recalls on defective cars including a new Ford vehicle recall.
Some of the most popular vehicles currently in use are under scrutiny for suspected product liabilities that can cause serious risks to passengers’ wellbeing. Among them is the top-selling Ford F150 pickup, which has seized the media’s attention in recent weeks as the government National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has ordered the recall of 1.4 million of the vehicles. The mandated recall — now expected to double to some 2.7 million automobiles — has to do with the premature failure of the steel straps that hold the truck’s fuel tank to the body of the car. It’s not hard to imagine what happens when these straps oxidize, weaken, and break: twenty-odd gallons of gasoline in a metal container begin thudding and dragging on the asphalt beneath the car. Sparks fly, fumes leak, and in some cases explosions occur that have engulfed a handful of the trucks in flames and burnt them throughout. There do not appear to have been any fatalities reported yet due to this vehicle defect, but if there is not swift action it will be just a matter of time until the first tragic Nevada wrongful death due to this resolvable issue.
In light of recent incidents such as the much-lampooned Toyota vehicle recall, one would think that Ford would act swiftly, decisively, and err on the side of caution. The consequences of a Las Vegas motor vehicle accident stemming from this defect would be horrific both for the public and for Ford’s PR efforts, and the fix is very inexpensive — it’s a couple of metal strips for each affected vehicle! Yet Ford’s overtures toward a wider recall have been lukewarm and unclear. It is unclear how many families will have to suffer the terror or even tragedy of living out these accidents firsthand rather than being spared the harm through proactive efforts on Ford’s part.
Other vehicle defects to be aware of this week include a problem with MINI Cooper model vehicles, which appear to be experiencing sudden loss of power-steering capabilities. We all rely on power steering to allow us quick, responsive control of our vehicles as we drive them at high speeds. Additionally, some 70,000 Volkswagen Jetta vehicles in the 2010-2011 model years have been recalled due to a wiring problem that can cause the windshield wipers and headlights to cease functioning. In Northern Nevada, such a loss of visibility could leave motorists stranded or even at risk of serious Nevada automobile crashes.
For all the gadgets we rely on and the luxury devices that we take for granted, ours is still a country where the hunt for profits can get ahead of the need for caution. If you or a loved one have suffered a personal injury due to a defective product, contact our team of experienced Las Vegas product liability attorneys today.