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November 30, 2006


A research paper in the American Journal of Public Health has found evidence that when a state upgrades its belt-use law enforcement from secondary to primary offence, the payoff in increased belt use is significant. Primary enforcement allows the police to ticket for non-use of restraints by motorists; secondary enforcement requires that a motorist be stopped for another infraction before a ticket can be issued for restraint non-use.

The abstract of the paper noted that, “The authors looked at restraint use rates in 47 states and the District of Columbia from 1991 to 2003, and compared the rates among states that had primary laws, secondary laws, and those that upgraded their laws during the study period. According to the authors, states that upgraded to primary enforcement laws experienced the greatest average increase in seatbelt use. From 1991 to 2003, states that upgraded raised their average belt use from 55.5 percent to 82.7 percent. The authors said states that upgraded to primary enforcement laws experienced an increase in belt use of about 10 percentage points. Furthermore, these states experienced belt use rates that were comparable to those of the original primary enforcement states. Thus, states that make the switch from secondary enforcement to primary enforcement can take full advantage of the safety benefits [that] primary enforcement offers.”

According to the authors’ estimates, states that upgraded their seatbelt laws since 1993 likely saved over 3,000 lives.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:57 PM


AVST stands for “advanced vehicle safety technologies,” a class of built-in vehicle features such as “safety alerts (e.g., forward collision warning systems (FCW), road departure warning (RDCW), lane departure warning (LDW), intersection collision warning), systems that provide crash warning(s) and automated control (e.g., FCW combined with automatic braking), and other driver assistance systems that can impact safety (e.g., adaptive cruise control (ACC), brake assist, backover safety systems, and automatic lane keeping).”

NHTSA has announced it will hold a one-day meeting of experts and others on January 25, 2007, to consider how drivers interact with such features, both for better and for worse. “Proper designs will allow drivers to achieve the optimum safety benefit, whereas poor designs can limit or extinguish any advantage. The purpose of this forum is to identify human factors research to help guide the development and deployment of AVST that can improve safety and minimize potential adverse effects.”

Issues listed for the meeting include:

Unintended Consequences, i.e., driver behaviors that “can undermine the potential effectiveness of the technologies. For example, drivers may not respond quickly enough to collision warnings if the system has false alarms or too many warnings. Even if the system is perfect, drivers may over-rely on the technology, increase their risk taking behaviors, and negate any potential safety benefits. Drivers may not understand the system’s limitations and trust the system to a point where the system cannot perform to their expectations. For example, some systems only work within specified speed ranges or other limits, but drivers may expect the systems to perform at all speeds and in all conditions.”

Design Characteristics, i.e., “the variability in the design of these technologies within and across different vehicle manufacturers. As drivers change between vehicles with new or unfamiliar AVST characteristics or CWS interfaces, …drivers may miss or not comprehend an auditory warning from System A because they are accustomed to the warning sound provided by System B.”

Driver-centered Design, i.e., “how variations in driver performance should be accommodated by system design. Driver performance can vary from person to person, from situation to situation, and from time to time. For example, as a group, older drivers have poorer eyesight, slower reaction times, and a decreased ability to perform multiple tasks simultaneously. Drivers may respond differently in heavy traffic versus light traffic. Tired drivers may behave differently than alert drivers. The intended benefits of AVST may not be achieved unless the systems are designed to accommodate a broad range of the variability in the characteristics of the driving population. The safety concern is that some drivers may not detect warnings, respond appropriately, or turn off systems that are perceived as annoying or useless.”

Integrating Multiple Systems, i.e., “integrated warnings from multiple systems. While integrated systems have the potential to prevent a large portion of crashes, they pose unique design issues (e.g., with what priority should the alarms be presented). The Department of Transportation (DOT) is conducting a large-scale field operational test called Integrated Vehicle-Based Safety Systems (IVBSS) to better understand and evaluate some aspects of warning integration. However, more discussion is needed to fully address this emerging issue as increasing numbers of AVST are brought into vehicles.”

Posted by MVHAP at 07:50 PM


A proposal by MADD to crack down on drunk driving with a range of countermeasures, including in-car technologies to detect drunk drivers behind the wheel and prevent them from operating vehicles, has gotten serious coverage in the press, and support from regulators and the auto safety community. The proposal echoes one made more than ten years ago in a New York Times opinion piece. Articles in recent issues of the Detroit Free Press and the New York Times, as well as an editorial in the Times supporting the approach, appear to reflect serious interest in it.

From the Free Press article:

The [MADD] push -- which includes calling for breath-test interlock devices in the vehicle of anyone convicted of drunken driving -- comes as current efforts to fight driving under the influence have made little progress in reducing alcohol-related deaths in recent years and spawned a backlash against some tactics. While drunken-driving arrests hit 1.4 million in 2004, deaths in crashes involving intoxicated drivers have held steady around 13,000 per year. Since 1999, every state has set a 0.08 blood alcohol level as the point at which a driver can be convicted of drunken driving. They also have added penalties such as instant cancellation of driver's licenses and vehicle impoundment for suspects who refuse blood alcohol tests.

From the New York Times article:

The threat of arrest and punishment, for decades the primary tactic against drunken drivers, is no longer working in the struggle to reduce the death toll, officials say, and they are proposing turning to technology — alcohol detection devices in every vehicle — to address the problem…

Many states already require the devices, known as ignition interlocks, for people who have been convicted several times. Last year New Mexico became the first to make them mandatory after a first offense. With that tactic and others, the state saw an 11.3 percent drop in alcohol-related fatalities last year.

From the New York Times editorial:

Currently, 45 states, the District of Columbia and most Canadian provinces have laws that require or allow some offenders — mostly those convicted more than once — to install alcohol interlocks on their cars if they wish to drive. Some 100,000 interlocks are in service in the United States.

Restaurant groups are complaining that wider use of the devices would eliminate wine at dinner, beer at ballgames, and other forms of “responsible drinking.” But it is hardly responsible for a driver to drink so heavily that the interlock kicks in. Driving is a privilege, not a right. If those convicted of drunken driving want the privilege, they ought to take extra steps to protect the rest of us.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:47 PM


For two days, on Feb. 26-27, 2007, NHTSA will conduct an in-depth public symposium at which experts and others will discuss brain injury, a critically important subject in the constellation of auto crashworthiness topics. In its announcement of the symposium, which provides registration and other details, the agency says:

With head and brain injury still a major factor in frontal crashes, NHTSA has identified a need to determine specific injury mechanisms and create more predictive injury criteria. The chief purpose of this Symposium is to hear the opinions, on an individual basis, of experts on short-, mid-, and long-term research efforts that may be relevant to the establishment of advanced brain/head injury criteria. Distinguished researchers engaged in the area of brain injury biomechanics will make presentations on their latest research efforts during the first day of the Symposium. The second day will be devoted to roundtable discussions of specific subjects such as injury mechanisms, crash dummy development, and future research including computer modeling. NHTSA will post a summary of the informationpresented during the Symposium on its website and place all relevant materials in the docket.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:46 PM


Last month it was reported that the American Trucking Associations has asked the government to require built-in speed limits on large trucks. Now, a major manufacturer of automotive equipment, Siemens, has announced that it has developed a system that prevents drivers from exceeding the posted speed limit.

The system “uses an onboard camera near the rearview mirror that can read speed-limit signs and feed the data to an onboard computer. So if the sign says 55 m.p.h., that's as fast as your car will go, not 1 m.p.h. more.” A company spokesman said the system can’t be fooled by defaced speed signs; “It has a lexicon of literacy based on the language, color, size and shape of the different signs and fonts of the different letters and numbers."

Siemens hopes to have the speed-limit recognition system ready for a European luxury car in a couple of years, though it won't say which one.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:44 PM


NHTSA is seeking comments on its current report analyzing changes it has made to decrease the likelihood of inadvertent injury from airbag deployment. The study,
“Safety Standard 208, Occupant Crash Protection – An Evaluation of the 1998-1999 Redesign of Frontal Air Bags,” is available at http://dms.dot.gov. Click on “Simple Search”; type in the five-digit Docket number 26486 and click on “Search”; that brings up a list of every item in the docket, starting with a copy of this Federal Register notice (item NHTSA-2006-26486-1) and a copy of the report in PDF format (item NHTSA-2006-26486-2).

In summarizing the study’s findings, NHTSA refers to airbag systems meeting its revised standard as “sled-certified,” a definition explained in detail in the report, and concludes:

The overall fatality risk in frontal crashes of 0-12 year-old child passengers in the front seat is a statistically significant 45 percent lower with sled-certified air bags than with first-generation air bags; fatalities caused by air bags in low-speed crashes were reduced by 83 percent. The overall fatality risk of drivers and of right-front passengers age 13 and older in frontal crashes is not significantly different with sled-certified air bags than with first-generation air bags; sled-certified air bags preserved the life-saving benefits of first-generation air bags.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:42 PM


Young drivers in Illinois and across the country are getting as little as two hours or less of on-road experience in their driver ed classes, the Chicago Tribune reports, even though “six hours of instructor-supervised driving is the benchmark for driver's education across the U.S.” It found that, “Even an hour of practice on a street satisfies Illinois' driver's education requirements. Of the 10 states with the largest school populations, only Florida has a weaker standard.”

It found the driver's education system “in disarray across the U.S.--a patchwork of guidelines, with little monitoring in some states, including Illinois, and little consensus on what works best in training teens to be safe. The system, for the most part, has remained the same since 1949…”

According to the article, classroom work and simulators have nudged aside on-road driving exposure for high school students. And, pointing up an anomaly that was first documented in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety studies in the 1970s, the paper noted that the effectiveness of driver ed in reducing crashes is doubtful. “In the 1960s, as the federal government poured millions into driver's education, researchers began studying whether the program yielded safe drivers. They were unable to establish a link. In 1981, federal funding dried up, leaving a financially strapped system lacking continuity… Meanwhile, car crashes have been the No. 1 killer of teens for decades, taking 5,000 to 6,000 young lives each year.”

The paper pointed out that, “A National Transportation Safety Board forum in 2003 urged the U.S. Department of Education and the National Highway Safety Administration to come up with a model driver training curriculum. Three years later, there has been no meaningful progress toward that goal…”

Posted by MVHAP at 07:40 PM


IIHS has released crash tests and evaluation results for 13 vehicles that have earned its “top safety pick” awards for the 2007 model year.

“Winners include 4 cars, 7 SUVs, and 2 minivans. This award recognizes vehicles that do the best job of protecting people in front, side, and rear crashes based on ratings in Institute tests. Winners also have to be equipped with electronic stability control (ESC). Vehicles eligible to win are current small, midsize, and large car models plus minivans and small and midsize SUVs,” the group said.

The Institute rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests plus evaluations of seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts. The first requirement for a vehicle to become a top safety pick is to earn good ratings in all three Institute tests.

No small cars won this year's award. The four-door Honda Civic won last year, but most 2007 Civics don't have ESC, which is a new IIHS requirement for “top pick” winners. Those that do don't have seat/head restraints rated good for rear crash protection. The Institute cautions that the ratings do not mean that smaller cars which win a “top pick” rank are necessarily safer than larger cars that do not. Larger, heavier vehicles are generally safer for their occupants in crashes, although they do more harm to the occupants of smaller, lighter vehicles in two-car crashes.

Here are the Institute’s “top pick” choices:

Large car: Audi A6 manufactured in Dec. 2006 and later
Midsize cars: Audi A4, Saab 9-3, Subaru Legacy equipped with optional electronic stability control
Minivans: Hyundai Entourage, Kia Sedona
Luxury SUVs: Mercedes M class, Volvo XC90
Midsize SUVs: Acura RDX, Honda Pilot, Subaru B9, Tribeca
Small SUVs: Honda CR-V, Subaru Forester equipped with optional electronic stability control

IIHS also listed what it calls “also-rans,” in which “rear protection was rated less than good” but other performance was “good”:

Acceptable rear protection: Audi A3, BMW 3-series 4dr, Lexus IS 250/350
Marginal rear protection: Acura TL, Honda Odyssey, Lexus ES 350, Lexus GS 350, Toyota Camry, Toyota FJ Cruiser, Toyota Prius, Toyota RAV4
Poor rear protection: Honda Accord 4dr, Infiniti M35, Nissan Quest, Toyota Avalon, Toyota Sienna

Posted by MVHAP at 07:36 PM


Has NHTSA complied with the requirements of a Federal statute and a court order mandating that it release a range of vehicle-specific safety information – consumer complaints, warranty claims, etc. – that it collects from manufacturer and other sources? The agency’s latest proposal to meet the requirements has come under sharp attack, led by Public Citizen www.citizen.org for allegedly falling far short.

Both the Washington Post and Detroit Free Press covered the issue in detail. The Post noted that the “secret” data include “eight million consumer complaints, 138 million warranty claims and 5 million field reports on product malfunctions” sent to the agency by manufacturers.

The Free Press reports that NHTSA is arguing that release of the information "will cause substantial competitive harm and will impair the government's ability to obtain this information in the future if released." Its current proposal for treatment of the information comes “in response to a ruling by a federal judge earlier this year that the agency had failed to provide enough notice to comment on an early warning system plan.

“In the March ruling, District Judge Richard J. Leon sent the proposal back to the agency. The early warning system was part of legislation approved by Congress following the massive recall of Firestone tires in 2000. It required automakers and other manufacturers to submit data on deaths, injuries, consumer complaints, property damage and warranty claims.”

An editorial appearing in the Toledo Blade and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette roundly condemned the agency and the Bush administration for taking an “anti-consumer attitude” in the matter. “The NHTSA claims release of the information would ‘invade personal privacy,’ but the stonewalling is characteristic of an administration that has consistently protected interests of industry at the expense of consumers. The auto and tire industries don't want the data out because it might result in more product-liability litigation.”

Posted by MVHAP at 07:33 PM


Deaths and injuries caused to children and others by drivers inadvertently backing over them are a serious problem to which few technological solutions appear to be available, according to NHTSA. An article in the Detroit Free Press notes that a new NHTSA study, if accurate, “would place backovers among the leading causes of accidental death for children younger than 5, claiming more lives than falls or poisoning.”

It quotes the NHTSA’s administrator as saying that though some technology might help, "our research showed it is not yet a reliable source to prevent these types of accidents. I intend to push everyone, including the auto industry, to come up with a solution that is practical and effective.”

“Despite the report's doubts about technology, safety advocates say it buttresses their call for Congress to require federal auto-safety regulators to set a minimum standard for rear visibility in vehicles, a step automakers oppose,” the newspaper said. Advocates contend that “the problem has grown worse as larger vehicles, such as pickups, vans and SUVs, have become more common in American driveways.” In its report NHTSA estimates 183 deaths were caused by backovers in 1998, the last year for which it had data available, of which 69 were children younger than 5. It also estimated that about 1,200 such accidents happen every year.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:31 PM


The crash of a school bus in Huntsville, Alabama, in which students were ejected and four teenagers were killed, followed by only weeks the publication of a new study that increased estimates of injuries sustained in school bus-related accidents. The Alabama crash, in which the bus toppled from an overpass after being hit by a car suspected of having a faulty steering mechanism, has renewed debate over whether school busses should be equipped with restraint systems for students.

The new, widely-reported study was published in Pediatrics. Its data show school-bus-related accidents “send 17,000 U.S. children to emergency rooms each year, more than double the number in previous estimates that included only crashes.

"The findings from this study indicate that motor vehicle crashes are the leading mechanism of nonfatal school bus-related injury for children in the U.S.," said CIRP Director Gary Smith, MD, DrPH, one of the study's authors and a faculty member of The Ohio State University College of Medicine. "In addition, this study identified several other important mechanisms of school bus-related injury. Further research is needed to determine the relative contributions of structural and operational components of the school bus, supervision, and rider behavior to the occurrence of these injuries and the effectiveness of occupant restraint systems and other strategies to prevent these types of injuries," Smith added.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:27 PM


The California Supreme Court has refused to review or de-publish a ruling that leaves Ford Motor Co. “on the hook for $82.6 million in damages and will probably expose the auto industry to greater liability for defective vehicles,” according to a report in a law publication.

“The automobile industry has had its eyes on the case since June 2004, when San Diego jurors awarded Benetta Buell-Wilson more than $368 million in damages after she was paralyzed when her Ford Explorer rolled over on Interstate 8.” Over time, the report said, the amount was reduced on appeal to $82.6 million.

In arguing against punitive damages in the case, Ford had contended that the trial judge “refused to let Ford present evidence that would have shown the Explorer was one of the safest sport utility vehicles on the road. But attorneys for the plaintiff responded that case law made it “clear that comparing a product's safety or design features with those of competitors isn't relevant…”

"What matters,” the plaintiff attorneys told the court, “…is whether the challenged product is defective, not whether other products on the market are… the salient facts are that Ford knew the Explorer was defectively dangerous, could have done something about it and didn't."

Posted by MVHAP at 07:26 PM


A November 2004 bus accident in the Washington, D.C. area has prompted NTSB to recommend that federal and state governments “prohibit motor coach and school bus drivers from using cell phones while driving those vehicles, except in emergencies.”

In the 2004 crash, 11 students were injured when the bus roof was sheared off by an overpass that was clearly marked as too low for the vehicle. The bus driver had been talking on a hands-free cell phone at the time of the accident and “said that he saw neither the warning signs nor the bridge itself before the impact,” NTSB said. “Evidence indicates that he did not apply any brakes before impacting the bridge.” The Board concluded that the driver's cognitive distraction resulting from his use of a hands-free cell
phone caused the accident.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:25 PM


United Steelworkers members “forced out on strike” and replaced by temporary workers at fifteen Goodyear plants in North America are suggesting that the tires produced by the temporary workers “might be more likely to be defective than tires produced by union shop employees”. They base the warning on a Princeton study that found labor strife to be a contributor to defects in Firestone tires involved in the Ford/Firestone recall of 2002.

The study concluded that a disproportionate number of flawed tires were produced at Firestone's Decatur, Ill. plant during a 1994-96 labor dispute, compared to the rate before or after the dispute. During that time, the failure rate at Decatur also was higher than the rate at non-striking plants, and at a plant that had a strike but did not use replacement workers as Decatur did. They said engineering tests also pointed in the same direction.

Posted by MVHAP at 07:22 PM


According to an article in the Greensboro, NC News-Record, the Federal government “has denied the state roughly $1 million in money for child-passenger safety programs, citing loose wording in the state law requiring kids to be buckled securely in a suitable protective seat.” NHTSA “denied the state's application for next year's grant because state law says infants and small children don't have to be in a protective seat ‘when the child's personal needs are being attended to.’”

The feds “felt that wording was too vague, allowing a negligent parent to get by with an unacceptably wide range of excuses for not doing the right thing and buckling the kids securely in child-safe seats.”

The federal money “also pays for educational materials and trains technicians who teach parents how to use the seats. But its most visible role is distributing seats to lower-income people, sometimes at events where parents can learn about child-passenger safety from trained technicians...”

Posted by MVHAP at 06:28 PM


Tennessee’s new “I am a Drunk Driver” law has drawn criticism, according to an AP story in the Knoxville News.
“Sheriffs, judges and even advocates fighting drunken driving have all criticized the new Tennessee law” and “a governor's task force recently recommended scrapping the law, which makes offenders pick up litter wearing bright orange vests that say, ‘I am a Drunk Driver.’”

“The law requires first-time offenders to spend 24 hours in jail and do 24 hours of litter pickup while wearing the embarrassing orange vest. Gov. Phil Bredesen, public safety officials and other experts criticized the bill from the start, saying it would be too expensive. They also didn't like that the bill shortened the jail sentence from 48 to 24 hour,” the paper said.

Posted by MVHAP at 06:25 PM


According to the Associated Press that a man who blacked out while driving, resulting in the death of two people, may not have a driver’s license. The decision upholds an earlier action by state officials. The man, a narcoleptic, lost his license in September 2001 after he fell asleep at the wheel and struck and killed a couple leaving a cafe. Subsequently he was granted, then denied a temporary license, and continued to drive without a license. Five months later, he blacked out again while driving to work. Arguing that he should be given a license, he pointed to “his doctors’ medical statements that they believe he should be allowed to drive without restriction,” although “the same doctors agree there is no guarantee that a future loss of consciousness will not occur.”

Posted by MVHAP at 06:23 PM


A Detroit Free Press article reports four auto recalls affecting about 300,600 vehicles.

“More than half of the vehicles being recalled -- 170,099 -- are Volvo passenger cars, station wagons and SUVs from the 1999-2002 model years… A malfunctioning electronic throttle module may cause the vehicles to unnecessarily go into ‘limp home’ mode, in which the vehicle's speed is limited to 10 to 30 m.p.h…”

“DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group is recalling 127,928 Chrysler Pacificas from the 2005-06 model years. The crossover vehicles have fuel pump modules and powertrain control module software that may allow the engine to stall under certain conditions, causing a crash to occur without warning. Chrysler also is recalling 2,258 Sebring sedans from the 2007 model year with a hood latch part that may break and allow the hood to open while driving. Dealers will replace the hood latches at no cost to owners…"

In another action, the paper said, DaimlerChrysler has begun mailing an owner's manual addendum to owners of 18,245 Jeep Compass SUVs from the 2007 model year. “The original manuals do not contain required warning information about the higher risk of rollover in an SUV…”

Posted by MVHAP at 06:19 PM


The government has opened an investigation into some Ford Escape and Mazda Tribute SUVs after receiving complaints of engine compartment fires, according to the Detroit Free Press.

“The investigation involves more than 600,000 SUVs from the 2001-03 model years. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it had received eight complaints of engine fires around the antilock braking system's electronic control module. Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said Friday there have been no reports of injuries linked to the fires and the automaker was cooperating with the agency's investigation.”

Posted by MVHAP at 06:17 PM


DaimlerChrysler AG's Jeep Liberty sport-utility vehicles and Dodge Neon small cars are being investigated by a U.S. safety agency after reports of overheating in dashboards and steering columns, the Detroit News reports.

“The Liberty inquiry covers 2006 models, after three reports of fires that appeared to start in a heating and air-conditioning unit under the dashboard, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said on its Web site. The Neon probe involves complaints that headlights in 2002 and 2003 models malfunctioned and, in some cases, smoke came out of the steering column area and plastic trim started to melt, the agency said.”

Posted by MVHAP at 06:09 PM


Alpha Elite 22-331, 22-332; Eddie Bauer 22-630, 22-631 2005-2006 Infant Child Restraints (Car Seats) (Fri, 17 Nov) Certain Dorel Juvenile Group (DJG) comfort infant child restraints, models 22-331 and 22-332 Alpha Elite and 22-630 and 22-631 Eddie Bauer, manufactured from July 26, 2005, and February 28, 2006. One or more of the six handle trim screws can loosen and fall out into the child occupant area. The child could then pick up the screw and place it into his or her mouth. The child could choke on the screw.

Acura RDX 2007 Honda Trailer Hitch Kit (Thu, 16 Nov) Certain Honda accessory trailer hitches, P/N 08L92-STK-200, manufactured between June 26 and July 8, 2006, and sold as aftermarket equipment for use on 2007 model year Acura RDX vehicles. The hitches may have been improperly welded during installation. The hitch may separate from the vehicle while in use which could result in a vehicle crash.

Big O Big O Aspen, Big O H/R Euro Tour; TBC Classic Radial SR, Cordovan Centron, Cordovan Grand Prix Performance GT, Multi-Mile Matrix, Multi-Mile Wild Country Radial RVT, Sigma Regent, Sigma Regent Touring HR, Sigma Regent Touring TR, Sigma Shadow, Sigma Stampede Radial SUV, Sigma Supreme TR, Sigma Tempest, Stampede Radial A/T, Vanderbilt Turbo Tech Radial GT Tires (Wed, 15 Nov) Certain TBC corporation tires of various models listed above 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.

Volvo C70, C70 Convertible, S60, S70, S80, V70, V70XC, XC70 1999-2002 Passenger Vehicles (Tue, 14 Nov) On certain passenger vehicles, a combination of throttle positioning sensor irregularities, a dirty throttle housing, and/or inefficient software calibration may cause a warning lamp to light and the subsequent onset of limp home modes. This resulted in a high number of vehicles going into the limp home mode without need.

Ford Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis 2007 Passenger Vehicles (Tue, 14 Nov) Certain passenger vehicles fail to conform to the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 212, 'Windshield mounting.' the windshield may not be properly secured to the vehicle body. If the windshield is not properly retained to the vehicle, wind noise, squeak/rattles and/or water leaks may occur. Also, loss of windshield retention may reduce occupant protection in the event of a crash.

Lippert 3500, 4000, 5200 Trailer Axles (Mon, 13 Nov) Certain Lippert trailer axles manufactured between May and June 2006 and installed as original equipment for certain recreational travel trailers. Due to mislocated spindle welds, the spindle may partially or completely separate from the axle tube and the wheel and hub assembly may come off the vehicle. Sudden axle failure could result in a vehicle crash.

Jeep Compass COMPASS 2007 Sport Utility Vehicles (Wed, 08 Nov) On certain sport utility vehicles, the owner's manual does not contain the required higher rollover risk warning information. Without the rollover warning information in the owner's manual, drivers may not be aware of the significantly higher rollover rate on this type vehicle, which could result in a crash.

Chrysler Pacifica 2005-2006 Passenger Vehicles (Wed, 08 Nov) On certain passenger vehicles, the fuel pump module and the power train control module (PCM) software may allow the engine to stall under certain operating conditions. This could cause a crash to occur without prior warning.

Chrysler Sebring 2007 Passenger Vehicles (Wed, 08 Nov) On certain passenger vehicles, the hood latch striker may break and allow the hood to open while driving. If the hood opens while driving, a crash could occur without prior warning.

Trailstar 202, 215, 222, 228, QB 2007 Boat Trailers (Thu, 02 Nov) On certain boat trailers, the castings holding the bolts on the pivot hitch assembly for the swing-away tongue may break. If the casting bolts break, the trailer could detach from the tow vehicle increasing the risk of a crash.

Coachmen Coachmen 19997-2003 Recreational Vehicles (Wed, 01 Nov) On certain recreational vehicles built with Dometic two-door refrigerators, a fatigue crack may develop in the boiler tube in the area of the weld between the boiler tube and the heater pocket. A fatigue crack may release a sufficient amount of pressurized coolant solution into an area where an ignition source is present. The release of coolant under certain conditions could ignite and result in a fire.

Buick Lacrosse, Chevrolet Impala, Pontiac Gran Prix (Tue, 31 Oct) On certain vehicles, the fuel tank is missing the adhesive layer that bonds the barrier layer to the outer shell of the fuel tank. With this condition, fuel and/or fuel vapors could seep out between the layers, increasing the risk of a fire.

Buick Lacrosse, Rendezvous; Chevrolet HHR, Malibu, Silverado, Tahoe, Trailblazer; GMC Envoy, Sierra; Hummer H3; Pontiac G6, Montana 2004-2006 Vehicles (Fri, 27 Oct 2006) Certain vehicles originally built with cloth seats that were equipped with an automatic air bag passenger sensing system and later reupholstered with aftermarket leather seat cover kits are involved. Testing has indicated that the aftermarket leather seat covers can cause the passenger sensing system to malfunction. If the passenger sensing system malfunctions, the front air bag on the passenger side may be disabled when it should be enabled, or enabled when it should be disabled. In either case, in the event of a crash that requires air bag deployment, a front passenger's level of injury may be increased.

Mickey Thompson Dick Cepek Mud Country, Radial F-C II; Mickey Thompson Baja ATZ, CLAW, MTZ Tires (Fri, 27 Oct 2006) Certain Mickey Thompson tires of various models listed above 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 YZFR6 2006 Motorcycles (Fri, 27 Oct 2006) On certain motorcycles, the air filter mounting screws may come loose and fall out. If the screws fall out, they could get caught in the throttle valve which could prevent the operator from reducing engine speed properly. This could result in a loss of control and a vehicle crash with injury or death.

Pep Boys Cornell 1000, Definity Dakota A/T, H/T; Definity EX600; Futura 2000 Radial LTE, GLS Super sport, Scrambler A/P Tires (Fri, 27 Oct 2006) Certain Pep Boys tires of various models listed above 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.

Posted by MVHAP at 05:55 PM