US NHTSA Expanding Ford Explorer Exhaust Odor Probe To 1.33 Million Vehicles

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The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has moved to expand its probe into reports that exhaust and carbon monoxide leakage into the cabins of Ford Explorer SUVs and those leaks may be linked to numerous car crashes. The expansion is to now encompass 1.33 million vehicles, according to a newly released statement from the regulatory body.

The NHTSA has reportedly received over 2,700 complaints related to the issue — the odor of exhaust in the cabin, possibly high levels of carbon monoxide exposure, etc. Related to that, there are known to be 3 car crashes and 41 injuries amongst police and civilians that may have been caused as a result of the issue.

The investigation relates to Ford Explorer SUVs covering 2011–2017 model years.

Now you might be wondering why I’m covering this for CleanTechnica. … The reason is a simple one: being mentally incapacitated or killed via carbon monoxide poisoning isn’t possible in an all-electric car. (Well, not easily so anyways. I suppose that so long as the carbon monoxide is coming from a different car, a gas or diesel one, it is technically still possible.)

Reuters provides more information: “Ford has issued multiple technical service bulletins related to the exhaust odor issue to address complaints from police fleets and other owners, NHTSA said. Ford said in a statement a dedicated company team is working with police, NHTSA and others ‘to investigate reported issues and solve them.’ …

” The agency said it had ‘no substantive data or actual evidence,’ such as a blood test ‘supporting a claim that any of the alleged injury or crash allegations were the result of carbon monoxide poisoning.’ … KXAN-TV in Austin reported this month that Austin police had pulled 40 Explorers from service and more than a half dozen officers became ill after reporting exposure to carbon monoxide.”

Maybe the police departments in question should switch over to electric vehicles when possible? With long-range electric vehicles now hitting the market in earnest, it seems a real possibility to do so.

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James Ayre

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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