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Ford Recalls 2 Million Ford-F150 Pickup Trucks Due to Risk of Fire

F-150 Regular Cab and SuperCrew Cab models have faulty seatbelt pretensioners.

The Ford Motor Company is recalling 2 million Ford F-150 Regular Cab and SuperCrew Cab models for faulty driver and front passenger seat belt pretensioners sold between 2015 and 2018 in North America. The trucks have seatbelt issues that are at risk of igniting a fire. 

Affected F-150s include those built at the Dearborn Assembly Plant from March 12, 2014 to Aug. 23, 2018, and the Kansas City Assembly Plant from Aug. 20, 2014 to Aug. 23, 2018. Ford’s reference number for this recall is 18S27.

According to Ford’s press release, an investigation into the matter found certain driver and passenger seatbelt pretensioners capable of generating enough sparks during use to start a fire when combined with the routinely exhausted gases within the lower part of the vehicle’s B-pillars. 

A car has several pillars, with each serving as vertical support to retain the vehicle’s structural integrity. These pillars are designated alphabetically. The B-pillar in question is found between the doors, and separates the front and back seat area of the car. 

Ford’s investigation found that certain seatbelt pretensioners, which are mechanical pulley systems allowing seatbelts to function as they do, could cause enough sparks, and thereby heat, to ignite gases within the B-pillar’s lower half. This consequent fire could then spread to the insulation and adjacent carpeting, leading to a serious problem.

The company’s press release stated it found 17 reports of smoke or fire in the United States, and six reports of the same nature in Canada, resulting in a situation that now requires active recalling of all affected vehicles. 

In the North American market, an estimated 1,995,776 vehicles are affected by the seatbelt pretensioner issue, with 1,619,112 of those sold in the United States, 339,884 sold in Canada, and 36,780 in Mexico. 

Ford’s recall will see dealers inspect the area and apply heat-resistant tape wherever necessary. For the Regular Cab vehicles, the back interior panels will be modified as needed, as well. All repairs are at no cost to customers.

Ford recalled certain F-150s due to inadequate fuel pumps in June, and had two further recalls for both Fusion and Escape models in July.