For the longest time, the auto industry and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) had a very tight relationship. It was the type of relationship that ultimately resulted in the Takata airbag inflator crisis and the General Motors ignition switch scandal, both of which are still rocking the industry. Indeed, those issues seemed – as well as new, more aggressive agency management – appeared to light a fire under regulators to move more aggressively on automotive safety. Now, it seems that carmakers are issuing automotive recalls.
The latest recall by Ford came to light yesterday in a story by Automotive News. The automakers recalled 51,470 Transit vans for rear seatbelt buckle issues. According to Ford, rear seatbelt buckles can be severely damaged if someone puts a heavy weight on a buckle. Once damaged, the seatbelt will likely fail to latch, raising the chances of injuries occurring.
The recalls applies to 2015-16 Transit vans built at the automaker’s Kansas City plant. According to Ford, 48,990 of the trucks are in the United States; 1,781 are in Canada, and 699 are in Mexico.
In another recall, the automaker announced that 3,683 2016 F-150 pickups have been called back for problems with their multi-contoured seats. Ford manufactured the affected F-150s at its Dearborn manufacturing facility.
According to Ford, when the multi-function/multi-contoured front seat is in massage mode, the occupant classification system can misidentify an adult as a child, suppressing the front passenger airbag, increasing the risk of injury. Ford said that 2,894 of the F-150s are located in the United States, 503 are in Mexico and 286 are in Canada.
According to Ford, no injuries or accidents have been linked to either issue. The automaker will notify owners who can then take their vehicles to their dealers for free repairs.