Ford has issued an auto defect recall for about 270,000 Fusions and 2,760 Rangers in North America because they could have transmission issues that can cause them to roll away and cause injuries. The fault could cause the cars to start moving without warning when the driver thinks it is in park. According to the Detroit Free Press, consumers have reported incidents of property damage and injuries which could be related to the Fusion defect. On some affected Rangers, the two fasteners that secure the transmission shift cable bracket to the transmission housing may not have been torqued to specification.
Dangerous Transmission Defects
Ford says over time, the cable bracket can come loose and the transmission would be in a different gear than the one selected by the driver. This condition could lead the driver to remove the ignition key with no instrument panel warning message or chime that lets him or her know that the transmission is not in park. This, in turn, could cause the vehicle to roll away if the parking brake is not applied, which escalates the risk of an injury or crash.
The recalled Rangers were built in the Michigan Assembly Plant from March 5-13 this year. Ranger owners are urged to go to dealers who will adjust the fasteners and make sure everything is safe. Drivers are urged to use the parking brake at all times until the recall is completed.
The Fusion recall involves 2013-2016 midsize sedans with 2.5-liter engines. The problems are similar to the Ranger issue. Fusion drivers may shift their lever into park and remove the ignition key. But the transmission may not actually be in park, increasing the risk of a rollaway. Ford is aware of three reports of property damage and one report of an injury related to this vehicle defect. Ford is urging Fusion drivers to use their emergency parking brakes until dealers can fix the problem. The recalled vehicles were built in the United States and Mexico.
If Your Vehicle Has Been Recalled
Transmission defects are serious. They could cause rollaway crashes that could result in serious or even fatal injuries, not just for the drivers or vehicle occupants, but others on the roadway as well. The most high-profile fatality involving a rollaway defect was that of Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin who died at age 27 from injuries after his recalled Jeep Cherokee rolled off his driveway and pinned him to a mailbox outside his Los Angeles home.
You can check if your vehicle is involved in the recall by visiting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website and entering your vehicle identification number of VIN. If you or a loved one has been injured as the result of an auto defect, you may be able to seek compensation for the injuries, damages and losses you have sustained. Please contact an experienced auto defect lawyer who will be able to provide you with more information about pursuing your legal rights.