U.S. auto safety regulators have launched an investigation into the safety of brakes on certain versions of the Ford F-150 pickup truck. According to a USA Today news report, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has launched an investigation into the safety of brakes on the pickup trucks. Vehicle owners have described a “sudden and complete loss” of braking in 3.5-liter engine versions of the 2015 and 2016 model-year F-150, according to an internal document posted on NHTSA’s website. The federal agency said it had received 10 reports of symptoms on 2015 model-year vehicles and 15 reports on 2016 vehicles. The investigation covers about 282,000 pickups.
Ongoing Issues with F-150 Brakes
In the 2015 pickups, complaints allege symptoms of the brake pedal going to the floor with sudden and complete loss of brake effectiveness, brake warning lamp illumination and or low or empty brake fluid level. In the 2016 trucks, the complaints allege a sudden and complete loss of brakes without the brake warning lamp illumination and low brake fluid level. NHTSA said it has opened up an investigation to evaluate the scope, frequency and safety-related consequences of the alleged defect and the vehicles involved.
In May, Ford recalled 2013 and 2014 model-year F-150 pickups with lighter engines built from August 2013 through August 2014 to fix a defect stemming from what Ford said was a loss of brake fluid from the brake master cylinder reservoir into the brake booster. The 2016 vehicle complaints, however, are different, NHTSA says, adding that Ford dealers have allegedly diagnosed the problem as a failure of the master cylinder. Ford has promised to cooperate with NHTSA on the investigation. Ford has not yet launched a recall to fix brake issues on the 2015 and 2016 F-150 trucks, which are the most popular of the automaker’s vehicles.
Brake defects can be extremely dangerous resulting in serious if not fatal injuries. A sudden and unexpected loss of brakes can cause even an experienced driver to lose control of his or her vehicle. We trust Ford is looking to issue a prompt recall based on NHTSA’s findings so consumers are able to repair these vehicles and protect themselves from impending danger.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of these or other auto defects, it would be in your best interest to contact an experienced auto product liability lawyer who will fight for your rights and help ensure that the negligent manufacturers are held accountable.