One of the nation's best-selling small sport utility vehicles was the subject of two separate recalls earlier this week over concerns that oil and gas leaks could potentially cause engine fires.
According to documents submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the recalls were voluntarily initiated by the Ford Motor Company and cover a massive number of 2013 1.6 liter Ford Escape SUVs sold around the world.
The first recall, which affects 161,334 Escapes, was initiated after the automaker received 13 additional reports (bringing the total number to roughly 30) of fires being started by faulty cylinder heads that overheat, crack, and spill oil onto the engine compartment. Fortunately, no injuries or deaths have yet been reported in connection with this auto defect.
Interestingly, the second recall covers 11,821 of the Ford Escapes covered by the first recall. Here, the issue being addressed is potentially faulty fuel lines that could chafe and leak gasoline. While no injuries or fires have been reported from this defect, it is worth noting that many of the affected Escape models may have had their fuel lines installed incorrectly by technicians during a prior recall.
Thus far, the 2013 Ford Escape, which was redesigned for this model year, has been recalled seven times. Outside of the aforementioned issues with faulty fuel lines and cylinder heads, the recalls covered everything from floor carpeting that could potentially interfere with braking to leaks in the coolant system.
While auto safety experts have indicated that this is an exceptionally high number of recalls for a new car model and rather troublesome, Ford officials maintain that any mechanical issues with the Escape will be resolved quickly.
Owners of the affected Escape models will be notified by Ford of the recall in late January 2014, and instructed to take their vehicles to local dealers for fixes to the engine shielding, cooling systems and control systems.
Stay tuned for updates ...
If you have suffered serious personal injuries or lost a loved one in a car accident that you believe was caused by a dangerous auto defect, consider speaking with an experienced attorney to learn more about your rights and options for seeking justice.
Source: The Washington Post, "Ford to recall Escapes again for oil, fuel leaks," Nov. 26, 2013; The Detroit News, "Ford recalling 2013 Escape SUVs for fire risks," David Shepardson, Nov. 26, 2013