Cruise Control Recalls
I owned a car that was recalled, because the cruise control switch could catch fire. I received my recall AUGUST 3, 2007 my son burned in this car 8 months earlier, Ford denies this claim of wrongful death court will be this summer, lets let a jury decide.
-- Ford Motor Co. announced the recall of an additional 3.6 million passenger cars, trucks, sport-utility vehicles and vans to fix a cruise-control switch that has been linked to at least 1,100 engine fires and prompted five previous recalls beginning in January 2005. The recall includes 177,000 vehicles in Mexico, Canada and Europe. The company has cumulatively recalled almost 10.3 million vehicles but still leaves 5.7 million vehicles at risk.
Ford recently admitted to receiving reports of engine fires involving older Crown Victoria sedans that were not included in the earlier recalls but came equipped with the same speed control deactivation switch manufactured by Texas Instruments Inc. The switch, which is powered at all times, can leak over time and cause an electrical fire. Fires in vehicles covered by previous Ford recalls have led to at least three fatalities, garage and house fires.
The fix will occur in two stages because units to correct the problem will not be available until October. Ford will begin notifying owners by mid-month to take their recalled vehicles in to Ford dealerships to have the switch disconnected. Then in October, owners will have to take their vehicles back to complete the installation.
Problems with the Texas Instruments device first surfaced in the late 1990s, prompting Ford to recall nearly 280,000 1992 and 1993 Mercury Grand Marquis sedans. A year later, NHTSA began an investigation after receiving complaints about engine fires in Ford vehicles that used the device. As that investigation expanded, Ford recalled more and more vehicles, including 740,000 F-150s, Ford Expeditions and Lincoln Navigators while maintaining that there was no conclusive evidence that the switches were to be blamed. In September 2005 and again in August 2006, Ford respectively recalled another 3.8 million and 1.2 million vehicles.
AUGUST 3, 2006 -- Ford Motor Co. has cumulatively recalled 6.7 million vehicles since January 2005 that are equipped with a Texas Instruments speed control deactivation switch that has been linked to dozens of engine fires. The recall, although massive, is incomplete and leaves millions of Ford owners fending for themselves.
Staging a recall in three separate notices only serves Ford's interest. Ford recalled 792,000 vehicles in January 2005 when their own investigation in 1999 revealed a deadly problem that could affect millions of vehicles. The subsequent recalls, 3.8 million vehicles in September 2005, and 1.2 million vehicles in August 2006, still leaves approximately 9.3 million vehicles at risk.
About 16 million of the switches in question are used in Ford vehicles and 4 million in non-Ford vehicles. Incidents of fires involving non-Ford vehicles have not been reported. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says it will continue to monitor vehicles equipped with the switch that have not been recalled.
The NHTSA has received 1,472 complaints about malfunctioning cruise controls. 559 reported vehicle fires, 253 of them in unrecalled models. It has confirmed 65 vehicle fires, but no fatalities, although there are at least 13 wrongful death suits filed against Ford involving switch fires. Most of the fires in question occurred when the vehicles were not running. The fires can ignite well after the engine has been turned off because electric current continues to run through the switch.
The NHTSA reported fatigue failure of a brake seal allows fluid to corrode the cruise control switch when it's pointed up. "The brake systems generate a vacuum that can potentially cause the (switch) to fail and in certain installation orientations catch fire."
Ford maintained there was no conclusive evidence the systems were malfunctioning and sparking fires until last September, when it recalled 3.8 million pickups and SUVs from the 1994 to 2002 model years, including the F-150.
In the late 1980s, Ford asked Texas Instruments to build a fourth-generation speed control switch -- first introduced in the 1960s. Then in the spring of 1992, Ford asked Texas Instruments to develop a quieter switch.