By Pamela C. Maloney, J.D.
Ford Motor Company issued a regional safety recall affecting an estimated 830,053 model year 2013-2015 Ford C-MAX and Ford Escape vehicles, MY 2012-2015 Ford Focus, MY 2015 Ford Mustang and Lincoln MKC vehicles, and MY 2014-2016 Ford Transit Connect vehicles because the pawl spring tab in the door latch could break, preventing the door from latching. If the door is unable to close, the door may unlatch while driving, increasing the risk of injury, Ford warned. Of the more than 830,000 vehicles affected by this recall, 766,682 were sold in the United States and federalized territories while 61,371 were sold in Mexico (Ford Press Release, August 4, 2016).
According to Ford, the rate of reports involving this issue has been higher in states with higher ambient temperatures and solar loading, Thus, the recall focuses primarily on Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Nevada, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Oregon, and Washington. Ford noted that it has identified reported accident and one reported injury that could be related to this issue.
Remedy. Ford dealers will replace the side door latches at no cost to the customer. In addition, Ford will launch a customer satisfaction program for vehicles outside the scope of the regional recall. If a vehicle exhibits a broken door latch, Ford will provide a one-time replacement at no charge. This offer is good for the life of the vehicle.
Contact information. Owners may contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
Companies: Ford Motor Co.
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