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Federal regulators recently launched a probe into reports that Ford Fusion steering wheels can occasionally become loose or fall off completely.
The initial complaint came from an unidentified person in Georgia, who told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that the steering wheel in a 2015 Ford Fusion fell into the driver’s lap while turning into a gas station. The alleged incident occurred September 23, 2017.
The agency has received three such complaints about loose steering wheels in the Fusion so far. Now, it is investigating the 2014 through 2016 models, which covers about 841,000 midsize sedans.
Other people have reported that the bolt attaching the steering wheel to the steering column came loose while they were driving, and they needed to have it retightened at repair shops. The agency currently does not have any reports of crashes or injuries associated with the potential defect.
Ford issued a statement saying it is cooperating with the agency’s investigation and that any owners with concerns about the safety of their vehicle should contact their local dealers. The company has not yet issued a recall. For now, investigators will look to determine the frequency with which the problem occurs, how many vehicles are affected and potential safety consequences to drivers.
Accidents caused by vehicle defects overlap with product liability law
Not all auto accident lawsuits are filed against other drivers. If an accident was due to a defect in a vehicle, the manufacturer or distributor of that vehicle could be the liable party.
To be successful in a product liability claim, you must prove the following:
- You were injured or suffered some sort of losses or damage
- The product in question was defective from the design or manufacturing phase
- The defect directly caused your injury
- You were using the product safely and for its intended purpose
The most difficult element to prove is that the product was defective. In many cases, it takes multiple claims to establish a pattern of flaws in the design or manufacturing process. A single instance of an alleged defect is typically not enough to prove a product is inherently dangerous.
For further guidance on seeking compensation through a product liability claim, meet with a skilled New York attorney at Robinson & Yablon, P.C.