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A federal Ram 2500 and 3500 steering failure investigation has been upgraded after more consumers reported losing the ability to steer the trucks. According to a report on Car Complaints, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened the original investigation in December 2018 concerning 200,000 model year 2015-2016 Ram 2500 trucks.
Federal officials were reportedly contacted by two Ram 2500 owners who claimed they lost the ability to steer while driving. One driver said his truck was traveling at nearly 70 mph when the steering linkage separated. The truck allegedly went off the road and caused injuries to the driver. In another incident, a Ram 2500 driver said he lost the steering while backing out of a parking space. This driver, too, reported that the steering linkage separated.
Details of the Investigation
Investigators found the steering failures were caused by separations of the drag links, steering linkages that connect between the right front steering knuckles and the pitman arms. The point of separation was at a threaded coupler within the drag link, which is normally used for adjusting the length of the linkage during steering alignment. Turning the steering wheel doesn’t work in these vehicles and leaves a driver no way to control the truck, consumers say.
NHTSA determined the same threaded coupler was used on two different drag link designs on 2013-2018 Ram 2500 and 3500 pickups referred to by Chrysler as 4×2-style or 4×4-style drag links. Fiat Chrysler (FCA US) sent information to NHTSA indicating 13 crashes and one injury caused by a loss of steering on the trucks. In addition, 48 incidents were reported to the automaker about losing the ability to steer from steering linkage separations. FCA told NHTSA that more than 300 trucks might have experienced loosening of the coupler jam nuts. NHTSA is monitoring results of Chrysler’s Ram recall and will try to determine the root cause of the steering problem.
Auto Product Liability Issues
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of steering defects or other auto defects, you may be able to receive compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and emotional distress. An experienced auto defect lawyer will be able to help you secure maximum compensation for your losses and hold the negligent automaker liable.