Federal Officials Investigating Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable Cars for Sudden Acceleration

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is launching an investigation into 310,000 older model Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable vehicles after reports of unintended sudden acceleration. According to an article in the Detroit News, the federal auto safety agency is conducting a preliminary investigation on 2000 and 2003 Taurus and Sable models and has so far received 50 complaints regarding incidents involving stuck throttles. The defect is apparently due to the failure of a plastic bracket that holds the speed control cable in place. The vehicles that are a part of this probe are equipped with 3.0L V6 Duratec engines.

The fractured bracket in these vehicles allows the cable to move, which may cause the throttle to stick. A number of these failures occur in vehicles that have more than 100,000 miles on the odometer. So far, no car accidents or injuries have been linked to this potential vehicle defect.

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NHTSA Requires Changes to Black Box Data Standards

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Many recent model-year vehicles contain event data recorders (EDRs), known as “black boxes” that constantly track and capture key vehicle information that could prove to be very useful after a car accident.¬†However, the access to the data collected from the EDRs and its analysis has so far been problematic and ineffectual. This stems from the variations in the information being recorded by the gadgets that are made by different automakers, as well as an absence of a consistent retrieval system for the data. According to Consumer Reports, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ruled that all automakers must standardize the data collected by these black boxes. The ruling does not mandate black boxes in all vehicles, but it does affect what data is collected and how that data can be accessed.

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GM and Isuzu Recall SUVs Due to Fire Hazards

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Isuzu and General Motors have issued an auto defect recall for more than 258,000 SUVs for an electrical issue that can result in vehicle fires. According to an Associated Press news report, the auto recall includes the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Isuzu Ascender and Saab 97-X SUVs from the 2006 and 2007 model years. In these vehicles, corrosion in the power-window and door-switch circuit boards can result in short-circuits and fires.

Officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) say that GM has already received reports of 28 auto fires as a result of this particular electrical issue. It is not clear if there have been any reports of injuries. Vehicle owners can expect to get a recall notice in the mail soon. Following this, owners can have their power window switches replaced at no cost. If you own one of these recalled vehicles, please contact your dealer for more information.

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