This past August, Ford Motor Company and the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) issued a safety recall for the Windstar minivan. Windstar model years 1998-2003 manufactured and sold in Canada and several cold-weather states — Maryland included — are at risk for axle cracking, corrosion and failure, which could lead to serious and even fatal auto accidents.
Ford stated that Windstar minivans sold, owned and operated in snow belt states like Maryland are at greater risk for axle corrosion and failure, due to rock salt used to treat slippery roads. As anyone who’s driven on Baltimore County, Maryland roads on bad winter days knows — the rock salt and sanding truck is a welcomed sight. But that salt can accelerate rust and corrosion on the undercarriage of a motor vehicle, which is the problem Ford describes on Windstars manufactured with “heat-treated axles.” The initial recall of more than half a million Ford Windstar minivans has been expanded by several thousand, bring the total number recalled to 612,000.
Baltimore County auto accident injury lawyers stay current on automotive safety recalls such as this one from Ford. Experienced Maryland traffic injury attorneys are aware of laws surrounding automotive product liability and consumer protection. If you live in Maryland and drive an older Ford Windstar minivan, you’d best contact your local Ford dealer and get the vehicle inspected, to avoid a possible traffic accident.
The news of the expanded Ford recall comes as a bereaved Mass. family speaks out about a fatal traffic accident with their Windstar minivan. The Boston-area family reportedly received their Ford recall notice just days after their husband and father was in a fatal crash with his Windstar minivan. The minivan’s rear axle reportedly snapped, sending the vehicle out of control and into the side of a building, killing the young male driver.
NHTSA has reportedly received 950 consumer complaints regarding the Ford Windstar axle issue, as of September.
Ford Expands Windstar Minivan Recall By 37,000 Units
DailyFinance Dec. 16, 2010
Minivan Recall Grows As Victim’s Family Speaks Out
Associated Press on NPR.org Dec. 16, 2010
Recall Alert: 1998-2003 Ford Windstar
Cars.com Aug. 27, 2010