Automaker Ford recently issued a recall of more than 12,300 of its 2015 model year F-150 pickup trucks. The recall spans North America and involves the possible faulty riveting on the upper intermediate or I-shaft. Separation of the unit can cause an unpredictable loss of steering control. One incident that appears related to the recall resulted in the inability to steer the vehicle, according to Ford’s official statement.
A majority of the new trucks have yet to be sold, but those customers now driving the recalled vehicles can have their trucks inspected and the faulty part replaced at no charge.
Although no accidents or injuries related to this recall have been reported, faulty equipment and parts in trucks and other vehicles continues to be a pervasive problem for automakers and consumers alike. With a record-setting number of recalls last year — totaling 64 million — the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) continues to closely monitor vehicles for safety defects.
Common automotive defects
The NHTSA considers a defect to include flaws in components, performance, construction or materials that adversely affect a vehicle’s safety and are shown to be present in a number of similar vehicles or equipment. Steering problems, like the one affecting the recalled F-150 pickups, top the list for safety defects — as do system components that can leak and cause fires or accelerators that can stick and cause unwanted acceleration.
Even faulty safety equipment, such as airbags that improperly deploy or poorly made safety belts on child car seats, may increase the risk of injury to passengers. Mechanics also face certain hazards, such as engine cooling fan blades that separate while they are working on them.
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