Ford ordered to recall three million vehicles with Takata airbags
US auto safety regulator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ordered Ford to recall three million vehicles with potentially defective Takata airbags. Rejecting the automaker's bid, it mandated recall for six models belonging to years 2007-2012, including the Ford Ranger and Fusion. So far, NHTSA has confirmed 18 deaths due to Takata airbag explosions and hundreds of additional injuries in the US.
Ford's petition rejected due to inadequate evidence
NHTSA has rejected Ford's petition to declare the finding of potentially faulty Takata airbags in its vehicles as 'inconsequential.' In a statement, the agency said, "Given the severity of the consequence of propellant degradation in these airbag inflators - the rupture of the inflator and metal shrapnel sprayed at vehicle occupants - a finding on inconsequentiality to safety demands extraordinarily robust and persuasive evidence."
'Review petition has several shortcomings'
"Ford's submission suffers from far too many shortcomings, both when the evidence is assessed individually and in its totality, to demonstrate that the defect in covered Ford inflators is not important or can otherwise be ignored as a matter of safety," observed NHTSA.
The following Ford cars will be recalled
The NHTSA has ordered Ford to recall the following vehicles in the US: Ford Ranger, Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ, Fusion, Edge, Mercury Milan, and Lincoln MKX et al. The agency has also given the auto giant a time period of 30 days to set up a schedule for notifying the affected vehicle owners and repairing the vehicles.
Mazda and GM to also recall cars with Takata airbags
The US auto safety regulator also announced that it was quashing a similar petition from Mazda, forcing it to recall around 5,800 vehicles. The agency's decision follows a November finding against General Motors that prompted the recall of 5.9 million vehicles with Takata airbags. This recall involved trucks and SUVs of the model years 2007 to 2014.