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October 31, 2006


In a paper being published in the American Journal of Public Health a leading injury epidemiologist has identified key passenger vehicle design factors that, if modified, would cut crash deaths by “more than half” and also substantially reduce fuel consumption.

In his paper, “Commentary: Blood and Oil: Vehicle Characteristics in Relation to Fatality Risk and Fuel Economy,” Dr. Leon Robertson, former senior scientist at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and faculty member at Yale School of Medicine, sums up his findings this way:

I examined the potential for a lower risk of death compatible with increased fuel economy among 67 models of 1999–2002 model year cars, vans, and sport-utility vehicles (SUVs) during the calendar years 2000 to 2004. The odds of death for drivers and all persons killed in vehicle collisions were related to vehicle weight, size, stability, and crashworthiness. I calculated that fatality rates would have been 28% lower and fuel use would have been reduced by 16% if vehicle weights had been reduced to the weight of vehicles with the lowest weight per size, where size is measured by the lateral distance needed to perform a 180-degree turn. If, in addition, all vehicles had crashworthiness and stability equal to those of the top-rated vehicles, more than half the deaths involving passenger cars, vans, and SUVs could have been prevented by vehicle modifications…

Although it is doubtful that many vehicle buyers have a precise knowledge of the effect of weight and size on personal and societal risk, most have probably heard that bigger is safer. The advantage to drivers and disadvantage to other road users of increased weight presents a dilemma for the knowledgeable buyer. If informed that greater weight reduces user risk somewhat but increases risk to other road users more, how many would opt for the heavier vehicle? The government has the authority to resolve the issue by regulating vehicle crashworthiness and fuel economy but has made only minor adjustments in the past 20 years. In an attempt to increase fuel economy, Congress in 1975 required each manufacturer to achieve an average of 27.5 miles per gallon for its fleet of passenger cars and light trucks.18 The manufacturer that wishes to market heavier vehicles can maintain the average by also marketing much lighter vehicles. Whereas fuel economy is improved when the miles-per-gallon average is increased, mortality risk is increased by the extent to which variance in average vehicle weight is increased. More sensible fuel economy regulation that would not be adverse to safety could be achieved by setting a standard for minimum fuel economy dependent on vehicle size. Manufacturers would have an incentive to minimize weight in vehicles in a given size category and to use more fuel-efficient engines in larger vehicles. The correlation of increased mortality risk with less than ‘good’ ratings on crash tests suggests that vehicle buyers would reduce their risk of vehicle death by avoiding vehicles with one or more ratings less than ‘good.’

Dr. Robertson’s list of “Vehicles With Lowest Death Rates,” developed for this website, appears in the “For Consumers” section.

Posted by MVHAP at 02:08 PM


A study published in Injury Prevention (Vol. 12, No. 5) has raised questions as to the commitment of car companies to the road safety policies of the World Health Organization (WHO). The study notes that “some commentators are skeptical” that car companies can “make a valuable contribution to road safety in poor countries” through their participation in the World Bank’s Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP).

According to the abstract, the authors examined road safety policy documents to assess the extent of any bias. They carried out word frequency analyses of road safety policy documents from WHO and the GRSP. They found that, “Compared to WHO's World report on road traffic injury prevention, the GRSP road safety documents were substantially less likely to use the words speed, speed limits, child restraint, pedestrian, public transport, walking, and cycling, but substantially more likely to use the words school, campaign, driver training, and billboard… There are important differences in emphasis in road safety policy documents prepared by WHO and the GRSP. Vigilance is needed to ensure that the road safety interventions that the car industry supports are based on sound evidence of effectiveness.”

In a statement about the study, its lead author, Prof. Ian Roberts of the Department of Epidemiology and Population Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, noted “serious concerns” that “car markers would be unlikely to promote safety initiatives (for example, better public transport or pedestrian-only streets in cities) that were in conflict with their commercial interests.” For instance, “whereas the WHO/World Bank document emphasizes the importance of speed reduction, particularly to promote the safety of pedestrians, a recommendation that is based on strong evidence, the GRSP documents talk about driver training and safety education campaigns, both of which the available research evidence show to be ineffective in reducing road injuries.”

He explained that the concern behind the study is “whether the GRSP would be able to persuade its commercial partners, many of which are major manufacturers, to fund road safety initiatives that might be seen to conflict with their commercial interests', explains Professor Ian Roberts, of the Department of Epidemiology and Population Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and lead author of the study. “Unfortunately, the findings reveal that this is not always the case.”

Posted by MVHAP at 02:08 PM


It is virtually unheard of that a motor vehicle industry interest group asks to have its behavior regulated by government, but a major trucking industry group, joined by some of its leading members and Road Safe America, an advocacy organization, is doing just that. The American Trucking Associations has petitioned federal regulators to require built-in maximum speed controls on large trucks, and to prevent trucking companies and drivers from tampering with them.

ATA said in a press statement that, “For the sake of safety, there is a need to slow down all traffic. The trucking industry is trying to do its part with this initiative. No vehicle should be capable of operating at excessive speeds on our nation’s highways.”

The move, which seeks a 68 mph maximum speed capability for big trucks, represents a major departure from long-standing auto industry opposition to proposals for mandating built-in speed limits, or so-called “speed governors,” on cars and trucks, despite the well-documented role of speed in crash and crash injury causation.

In a 2003 Gallup public-opinion survey carried out for NHTSA, a majority of those surveyed did not support such mandates, even though they believed that someone traveling 10 mph or more over the speed limit represented a safety hazard. Most cars in the U.S. today can exceed most posted speed limits by much greater margins than 10 mph.

For information on support for and opposition to ATA’s petition, go to these websites:

Posted by MVHAP at 02:07 PM


Advocacy groups spearheaded by parents who have lost children in unintentional backup rollovers are meeting strong opposition from auto makers as they call for legislation and rulemaking to require vehicle features to reduce such harm, the Detroit Free Press reports.

“It's the most contentious debate in automotive safety, but one that's elicited more tears than action so far. While acknowledging the parents' anguish, automakers have fought their proposals to a standstill. They point to voluntary improvements, such as transmissions that can't be accidentally pulled out of park, and argue the technology that might be required would cost hundreds of millions of dollars while saving few lives, if any. And the industry maintains that the best sensors and cameras on the back of a vehicle can't replace human eyes and ears, raising the question of how much responsibility the parents should shoulder,” the Free Press said.

The industry insists that the most effective way to help prevent what it calls “backing non-crash incidents” is to “urge the driver to check around the vehicle before backing," the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers said in a letter to lawmakers. But pending federal legislation known as the Kids and Cars bills “could save hundreds of children a year at a minor cost to automakers and consumers,” the newspaper said. “The bills address three common ways children get hurt around vehicles - by shifting them out of park, getting trapped by power windows and being backed over. Of those three, back-overs appear to be the most prevalent and the most deadly, in part due to the growing number of large trucks, SUVs and vans.”

"The issue isn't technology, it's common sense," a GM spokesman told the Free Press. "In the case of back-overs, if you have young children at home the responsibility does rest primarily with the caregiver or parent."

Posted by MVHAP at 02:06 PM


A faster phase-in for the proposed new Federal auto stability system rules has been urged by the IIHS, according to a Detroit Free Press article IIHS reportedly told NHTSA that the benefits in lives saved by the rule were “too great too wait.” IIHS did not offer a specific effective-date plan in its comments to NHTSA.

As now structured, the electronic stability regulation would begin to phase in with the 2009 model year and would apply to all new vehicles starting in the 2012 model year. About 30 percent of new vehicles now have ESC as standard or optional equipment. NHTSA is taking comments on the plan through Nov. 17. (For more information on the plan, click on the September 2006 Archive on the left.)

Posted by MVHAP at 02:04 PM


The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether police officers can be sued for intentionally ramming a fleeing car during a high-speed chase, causing the death or injury of the driver, the Los Angeles Times reports. In the Georgia case before the court, it said, a police chased and rammed a speeding car being driven by a teenager, who was rendered quadriplegic in the crash.

“Eight years ago, the justices shielded police officers from being sued in federal court for deaths and injuries resulting from high-speed chases. The only exception, the court said, is when police act out of ‘an improper or malicious motive,’ such as ‘to terrorize, cause harm or kill’ a suspect. In the 1998 case, the parents of a teenager from Sacramento sued after their son was killed when he fell from a motorcycle being pursued by a police cruiser at 100 mph. Because the officer did not intend to harm the cyclist, he could not be held liable, the high court ruled,” the LA Times report said.

According to NHTSA documents, many jurisdictions maintain “no-chase” policies for police acting to apprehend traffic law violators. See, for example, Law Enforcement Officers Focus Group Results, 2001. Search the report for “chase.”

Posted by MVHAP at 05:30 AM


With its safety image tarnished over time by such setbacks as Pinto fuel tank failures, rollover-prone Explorer SUVs, and stalling hazards from thick-film ignition defects, Ford now claims itself ready to “lead in safety,” starting with the introduction of its new Edge crossover. In a Detroit Free Press article the president of the company’s North and South American operations is reported as saying that from now on he “wants Ford to lead in safety - especially with safety pioneer Volvo in the company's brand portfolio. I don't want us having debates about whether it's going to be five-star or four-star,” he is quoted as saying, referring to government crash-test ratings. “Our intent as we go forward is to make sure we lead in safety.”

The Edge offers side-curtain airbags and other safety features as standard. “During a test drive around San Francisco on Monday, Stephen Kozak, Ford's chief safety engineer, boasted that standard safety features will give the Edge a competitive advantage in the marketplace. He emphasized that the Edge will now offer more standard safety features than even luxury crossovers,” the Free Press reported

In a related development, Ford recently announced that it is carrying out research into “new” safety belt designs, including four-point safety belts and inflatable safety belts.” As far back as the 1960s, four-point belts were found by researchers to be substantially superior even to three-point belts in controlling occupant crash forces and thus reducing the likelihood of injury. A Detroit News article noted this response to the Ford announcement:

"The first issue when it comes to seat belts is making today's seat belts better than what they are with known technology," said Clarence Ditlow, the executive director of the Center for Auto Safety. "The inflatable seat belt has been known since the 1970s," when it was used on some research vehicles, Ditlow said. "There's no reason why that shouldn't be in cars right now."

"Our goal at Ford Motor Company is to keep finding ways to enhance the safety systems in our vehicles," a Ford spokesperson told the newspaper. "We plan on continuing our pioneering work to make our vehicles even safer in the future."

Posted by MVHAP at 05:25 AM


A new study by IIHS has found that side airbags that protect people's heads are reducing driver deaths in cars struck on the near (driver) side by an estimated 37 percent, while airbags that protect only the chest and abdomen but not the head are reducing deaths by 26 percent. “Head-protecting side airbags reduce driver fatality risk when cars are struck by SUVs and pickups, not just other cars. This is important because risks go up for occupants of cars struck in the side by the higher riding vehicles. In particular, the car occupants' heads are vulnerable to being struck,” IIHS said.

It said that the best estimates from the new analyses, based on the combined set of vehicles (1997-2004 models), show somewhat smaller benefits of head-protecting side airbags and larger benefits of torso airbags compared with a 2003 IIHS study. “The difference in effectiveness for these two airbag types was smaller when researchers looked at newer cars only (2001-04s during 2000-04).”

NHTSA does not require side airbags in new cars, but a growing number of manufacturers are providing them as options or standard equipment. “The airbags vary by design. Some descend from the vehicle roof to protect the heads of occupants in both front and back seats. Combination side airbags inflate from the vehicle seat or sometimes the door. These protect occupants' torsos and heads too,” IIHS said.

Posted by MVHAP at 05:23 AM


NHTSA’s event data recorder “Black Box” disclosure rule is getting hassled from all sides, the Detroit News reports. “A new federal rule to standardize minimum requirements for "black boxes" in vehicles wasn't expected to be controversial, but it has ignited a firestorm of protests from groups that largely agree the information collected by the devices improves auto safety.”

Auto companies “have asked NHTSA to rewrite the rule because they say it's too vague and will cost too much to implement. Safety advocates say it doesn't go far enough,” the paper says. “A NHTSA spokesman said last week the agency will respond to the requests, but did not say when. If denied by the NHTSA, the petitioners can ask a judge to block the rule from being implemented,” it reports. For earlier coverage in Current Developments, search this site for “Black Box” or scan monthly archives headlines to the left.

Posted by MVHAP at 05:22 AM


Automakers want the U.S. government to “substantially change a proposal to make vehicle roofs stronger to reduce deaths and injuries in rollover crashes,” according to a Reuters report based on industry correspondence and documents. It says that “more robust opposition to the government's update of the 30-year-old standard has crystallized over several months…”

“Rollover crashes account for roughly 10,000 fatalities annually or a quarter of all U.S. traffic deaths, federal safety figures show. About 600 deaths and 800 injuries are caused by head contact with a collapsed roof in a rollover. NHTSA proposed increasing roof strength standards more than 50 percent to 2-1/2 times vehicle weight. Regulators also want the standard to maintain sufficient headroom for an average sized adult male,” Reuters noted.

The auto industry is “pushing for roof strength test criteria that could be more forgiving than the government's plan. Companies also want a more predictable device for determining safe head room, especially for sport utilities,” but leading consumer and safety organizations assert the automakers are out to gut what advocates believe is an already weak NHTSA initiative,” Reuters said. (For earlier stories on the roof-crush rulemaking issue, search this MVHAP site for “roof crush” or “FMVSS 216.”)

Posted by MVHAP at 05:09 AM


The journal “Injury Prevention” is offering free online access to a group of papers published in its recent supplement (Inj Prev 2006 12) addressing youthful driver risks and behaviors. The authors and papers are as follows:

Winston and Senserrick, Competent Independent Driving As An Archetypal Task Of Adolescence;
Williams, Young Driver Risk Factors: Successful And Unsuccessful Approaches For Dealing With Them And An Agenda For The Future;
Shope, Influences On Youthful Driving Behavior And Their Potential For Guiding Interventions To Reduce Crashes;
Berg, Reducing Crashes And Injuries Among Young Drivers: What Kind Of Prevention Should We Be Focusing On?;
Groeger, Youthfulness, Inexperience, And Sleep Loss: The Problems Young Drivers Face And Those They Pose For Us;
Fisher, Pollatsek and Pradhan, Can Novice Drivers Be Trained To Scan For Information That Will Reduce Their Likelihood Of A Crash?;
Simons-Morton and Ouimet, Parent Involvement In Novice Teen Driving: A Review Of The Literature;
Smith, Social Marketing: An Overview Of Approach And Effects;
Gillan, Legislative Advocacy Is Key To Addressing Teen Driving Deaths;
Juarez, Schlundt, Goldzweig, and Stinson, Jr., A Conceptual Framework For Reducing Risky Teen Driving Behaviors Among Minority Youth;
Senserrick, Reducing Young Driver Road Trauma: Guidance And Optimism For The Future.

Posted by MVHAP at 05:05 AM


In a feature entitled “Putting Limits on Teen Drivers,” Time has looked in depth at arguments for preventing crashes by imposing curfews on teen drivers, and resistance by some parents to the idea.

“Getting a driver's license remains a signal milestone for teens in their impatient journey toward adulthood--and for their parents, eager to liberate themselves from constant chauffeuring duties,” the article notes. “But car crashes are the main cause of death for U.S. teenagers, killing about 6,000 drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 each year… And the younger and less experienced the driver, the worse the danger. Drivers ages 16 to 19 have a fatality rate four times as high as that of drivers 25 to 29.”

Although many states have adopted some form of graduated driver license requirements for teens, the article notes, with resulting drops in crashes, “legislators have balked at imposing additional measures that could make teen drivers even safer.” Yet studies “suggest that nighttime driving is particularly dangerous for teens, and curfews are urged... But last year nine states introduced measures to rein in teens' nighttime driving privileges, and only one--Nevada--passed such a law.” The changes there “are already producing positive results. In Las Vegas, collisions involving teen drivers were down 18%, to 1,155, for the first eight months of the year compared with the same period in 2005.”

Posted by MVHAP at 05:00 AM


“In a recent case, 28-year-old Craig Moore, an engineer from South Yorkshire, ran into trouble when, in the words of a spokesman for the Greater Manchester Police, ‘instead of just accepting that he had been caught traveling above the speed limit, Moore decided to blow the camera apart. Using thermite, a pyrotechnic substance often used in underwater welding, Mr. Moore succeeded in wrecking the camera, but its hard drive survived — along with videotape of his van driving toward it and then driving away, as the picture dissolved in a cloud of fiery sparks. He was sentenced to four months in jail.’”

A New York Times feature article describes this and other examples of the limits to which some British motorists will go in opposing the country’s generally successful program using speed cameras to identify and ticket speeders. “To drive in Britain is to measure out your trip in speed cameras. As inevitable as road signs and as implacable as the meanest state trooper, they lurk everywhere, the government’s main weapon against impatient drivers. It is a shame that so many people hate them,” the Times article says.

“In a nation that is estimated to have four million surveillance cameras — the most per capita in the world, civil liberties groups say — there are currently as many as 6,000 spots for speed cameras, in the country and in the city, on highways, urban arteries, suburban streets and rural lanes… Even if they agree that speed limits are necessary, many motorists resent having to obey them all the time. They say they hate being constantly on the lookout for cameras and accuse the government of treating them like cash machines,” according to the Times.

But in the end, the effort to defeat the cameras is not worth it, a spokesman for the Institute of Advanced Motorists told the Times. “A lot of drivers feel alienated by speed cameras,” he said. “But the best way to deal with a speed camera is simply to comply with the law, and not to set fire to it.”

Posted by MVHAP at 04:58 AM


In July, Current Developments noted a Detroit News article report that Toyota was planning to spend millions to recall and deactivate front-seat passenger air bag cut-off switches in nearly 160,000 Tundra pickups to avoid having to install a costlier child safety seat anchoring system. The action, which CNN called "totally bizarre," was prompted by NHTSA's rejection of Toyota's petition to waive a federal safety regulation that requires most vehicles built after September 2002 and equipped with the cut-off switch to also have a child seat anchor system known as LATCH for lower anchorages and tethers for children. The regulation was meant to ensure that child seats stay in place in a crash, especially in vehicles with smaller rear-seating, such as pickups. (See July 2006 Current Development Archive.)

Now, the paper reports, NHTSA has forced the automaker to modify its recall, which the agency said was insufficient. In response, Toyota has developed a new plan in which it will “send a letter to all affected Tundra owners with a label outlining the problems with the Tundra's child latches and air bag switch, and recommending that owners always use the rear seats for children. If owners want the front latches installed, they can request it from Toyota, which will provide them for free once it figures out how to retrofit the latches into the truck.”

Posted by MVHAP at 04:55 AM


As NHTSA’s investigation into Hummer wheel failures continues, The Sacramento Bee, which first publicized the wheel-failure issue, now has reported that “someone has stolen consumer complaint files and legal documents about a potential steering component safety problem with Hummer H2 sport-utility vehicles” from NHTSA. “The theft occurred on Sept. 24, according to an Oct. 5 letter written and signed by Anthony M. Cooke, chief counsel for the federal highway safety regulator,” the Bee said.

"The stolen information included complaints, lawsuits and warranty claims made by consumers ... that included names, addresses, phone numbers and (Hummer) vehicle identification numbers," Cooke's letter stated. “The agency said the materials were duplicates of the originals, so the investigation will not be hampered by their loss.”

Posted by MVHAP at 04:53 AM


Maintaining that simpler instrument panels would increase auto safety. A Central Michigan University professor, Richard Backs, reportedly wants to
“help automakers develop better technology which would minimize driver attention failures and design dashboard devices that require less attention to operate.”

According to ConsumerAffairs.com, Backs is conducting “psycho-physiological tests of driver responses” using a desktop driver simulator provided by General Motors. "We are simulating how people use their attention while driving to better understand distractions such as navigation systems, cell phones and other portable wireless devices," Backs told the website. “Through our research, we hope to learn how to minimize distractions” from such devices as cell phones, radios and global positioning aids, he said.

Posted by MVHAP at 04:48 AM


The increasing number of motorists and deer in Texas are leading to a greater frequency of collisions between the two on the state's roadways, an insurance publication reports. “Texas leads all other states in motorist who have been killed in vehicle-animal collisions. Texas also has the largest deer population in the country. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) says the state's abundant wildlife and additional traffic have made Texas the most hazardous state for vehicle-animal crashes every year since 2000,” it reports.

“Last year in Kerr County alone, Texas Department of Transportation employees removed more than 1,500 dead deer off of the county's roadways…the 1,500 deer doesn't reflect all of the vehicle-animal collisions that occurred in 2005” because it “didn't count the number of deer that were struck by vehicles and later died off the roadway or the deer that were killed within the city limits of Kerrville."

The report quotes a police officer’s advice to drivers on how to anticipate and deal with potential deer-vehicle collisions, including this: “If you cannot avoid a head on collision with a deer… hold onto your steering wheel tightly, driving straight forward and riding out whatever happens” because "trying to dodge a deer at a high rate of speed can result in a rollover and I've never seen the damage from hitting a deer as bad as a rollover."

Posted by MVHAP at 04:46 AM


Audi A4 Ignition Switches (Fri, 20 Oct 2006) On certain passenger vehicles, as a result of a problem in the production process of the ignition switch, the anchor point of the spring may crack. This could potentially cause the return spring force to be insufficient for returning the ignition key to the running position after starting the engine. This condition causes electrical accessories such as windshield wipers and headlights to become inoperative increasing the risk of a crash.

Nissan Maxima Steering Column Anti-Theft Device (Wed, 18 Oct 2006) Certain passenger vehicles equipped with an "intelligent key" fail to conform to the requirements of federal motor vehicle safety standard no. 114, "theft protection." during an inspection of some vehicles at the assembly plant, it was found that the steering wheel was locked with the ignition knob in the "off" position but the vehicle transmission not being in the "park" position. if the key is turned to the "off" position without the transmission being in the "park" position, it is possible that the steering wheel can lock when turned to the right.

Nissan Murano Steering Column Anti-Theft Device (Wed, 18 Oct 2006) Certain sport utility vehicles fail to conform to the requirements of federal motor vehicle safety standard no. 114, "theft protection." during an inspection of some vehicles at the assembly plant, it was found that the steering wheel was locked with the ignition knob in the "off" position but the vehicle transmission not being in the "park" position. If the key is turned to the "off" position without the transmission being in the "park" position, it is possible that the steering wheel can lock when turned to the right.

APC HB 5 Headlight Replacement Bulbs (Mon, 16 Oct 2006) Certain APC HB 5 ultra white headlight replacement bulbs for 9007 applications, P/N 509007UWS. These bulbs do not provide adequate illumination which fails to conform to the visibility requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 108, Lamps, reflective devices, and associated equipment. Lack of visibility while night driving could result in a vehicle crash.

Chevrolet Aveo 2007 Passenger Vehicles (Fri, 13 Oct 2006) On certain passenger vehicles equipped with a 1.6L engine, during a NCAP severe frontal crash test, the fuel line in the engine compartment developed a fracture. In addition, the crash damage caused four short circuits in the fuse block, the combination of which allowed the fuel pump to continue running and fuel leaked onto the ground. If these conditions occurred in an actual crash, a vehicle fire could occur.

Sidump'R SDR 223, SDR 325, SDR 425 2007 Trailers (Fri, 13 Oct 2006) On certain trailers, during manufacture, some of the pipe fittings were drilled too deep, resulting in a thin wall in the male pipe thread. The male pipe thread may break off during or after assembly. If the fitting fails while in use, the air brake system could depressurize, using the brakes to engage suddenly, possibly resulting in a vehicle crash.

Various El Dorado, Jet/Tel, Laramie, Sumitomo Tires (Thu, 12 Oct 2006) Certain Treadways tires of various models (click on link) manufactured between August 6 and August 19, 2006 (DOT serial weeks 3206 and 3306.) Some of the subject tires may have been produced with non-conforming belt wire coat stock. If placed in service, the subject tires may develop a belt separation due to a reduced ability to prevent corrosion of the steel wires in an instance where moisture reaches the steel belt. A belt separation could result in a vehicle crash.

Yamaha Midnight Star, Road Star, Road Star MM Limited, Road Star Silverado 1999-2001 Motorcycles On certain motorcycles, certain transmission components may not meet Yamaha quality-control standards, which could allow abnormal wear that eventually results in a broken retaining circlip. If the circlip breaks, the transmission could lock up, which would also cause the rear wheel to lock up. This could result in loss of control and a crash with injury or death.

Harsco 203237, 203688, 203712, 203738 Wheel Modification Groups for Ford 2005-2007 F-250, F-350 Pickup Trucks (Wed, 11 Oct 2006) Certain Harsco wheel modification groups containing Accuride steel rims, P/Nos. 203237 and 203738; Accuride aluminum rims, P/N 203712; and GKN steel rims, P/N 203688, sold as modification equipment for certain 2005-2007 Ford F-250/F-350 4x4 pickup trucks to modify track width of front and rear axles. The rims provided in these wheel modification groups wear through the OEM brake lines. Brake failure can occur, possibly resulting in a vehicle crash.

BMW 3 Series 2006 Vehicles (Mon, 09 Oct 2006) On certain vehicles, one of the suspension control arm and swivel bearing connection bolts was not tightened correctly. The bolted connection could loosen. The bolted connection could break which could impair vehicle handling and control, increasing the risk of a crash.

BMW R1200 HP2, R1200 S 2006-2007 Motorcycles (Mon, 09 Oct 2006) On certain motorcycles, during assembly, the final-drive assembly O-ring may not have been installed correctly. A leak may occur at the location of this O-ring which is near the rear brake disc. If a leak were to occur, oil could come into contact with the rear brake disc, increasing the risk of a crash.

Infiniti Q45 Coupe 2004-2006 Vehicles (Mon, 09 Oct 2006) Certain vehicles fail to comply with the stop lamp and reflex reflector requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 108, 'Lamps, reflective devices, and associated equipment.' This standard is to reduce crashes, injuries and deaths by providing adequate illumination of the roadway, and by enhancing the conspicuity of motor vehicles on the public roads so that their presence is perceived and their signals understood, both in daylight and in darkness or other conditions of reduced visibility.

Infiniti G35 Coupe 2006-2007 Vehicles (Mon, 09 Oct 2006) Certain vehicles fail to comply with the vertical gradient and headlamp photometric values requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 108, 'Lamps, reflective devices, and associated equipment.' This standard is to reduce crashes, injuries and deaths by providing adequate illumination of the roadway, and by enhancing the conspicuity of motor vehicles on the public roads so that their presence is perceived and their signals understood, both in daylight and in darkness or other conditions of reduced visibility.

Big Dog Bulldog, Chopper, Mastiff 2005-2006 Motorcycles (Thu, 05 Oct 2006) On certain motorcycles, the long pivot bolt may bend or break during normal operation of the motorcycle. This could potentially cause the rear fender to abrade against the rear tire while the motorcycle is being driven. This condition could occur without any prior warning and could result in a crash.

Chrysler Aspen, Dodge Durango 2007 Vehicles (Tue, 03 Oct 2006) On certain vehicles, the right front steering knuckle may have been improperly manufactured and could break. This may cause a loss of steering control and result in a crash without warning.

Posted by MVHAP at 04:36 AM