Defective Auto Products Comments Off
Federal safety regulators have started a preliminary investigation into 2012 Jeep Liberty SUVs for potential fire danger in the driver’s side door. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Times, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has stated that it has received two reports of fires from consumers and at least one injury report.
Reports of Fires and Injury
The probe covers about 79,000 Jeep Liberty SUVs. In both instances, the fires allegedly started near the driver’s door power window switch. During the fires, the vehicles’ owners reported the windows and door locks started operating on their own. Drivers had to stop the vehicle and escape through the passenger side, the NHTSA report states.
The agency also stated that one vehicle caught fire a second time, even after it was repaired. Chrysler is said to be fully cooperating with the investigation. NHTSA will now examine the scope of these incidents in order to determine whether a recall would be warranted. So far, no recall plans have been announced either by NHTSA or Chrysler.
Prior Jeep Recall
In June, Chrysler recalled 2.7 million older Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty SUVs for potential fuel tank fire risks. This recall came after a brief standoff with government safety regulators. At first, the company defiantly refused the government’s request to recall the Jeeps. But officials decided to avoid a public relations fiasco and move forward with the recall instead. NHTSA contended that the Jeep’s gas tank could rupture in the event of a rear-end collision. The safety agency also said 51 people had died in fiery crashes in Jeeps with gas tanks positioned behind the rear axle.
The types of incidents reported by consumers with regard to the Jeep Liberty SUVs are truly worrisome. If the driver’s side door catches fire, it is extremely difficult for the driver to get out of the vehicle. This could result in catastrophic burn injuries or even death. I trust NHTSA will conduct a thorough analysis of these defects so that the situation can be rectified as consumers are safe in these vehicles. Anyone who has been injured as the result of an auto defect can seek compensation for injuries and damages by filing an auto product liability claim. The best auto defect law firms will always offer free consultations and comprehensive case evaluations to injured victims and their families.