Ford Motor said Thursday a second death in a 2006 Ranger pickup truck was caused by a defective Takata airbag. The automaker and U.S. government’s safety regulator have issued alerts, urging about 3,000 owners to immediately stop driving the vehicle.
Ford (F) said it’s taking this action because there have been two fatalities caused by driver airbag inflator ruptures from Takata inflators built on the same day.
The company said about 3,000 2006 model year Ranger vehicles in North America are equipped with airbag inflators that pose higher risk of rupturing in the event of a crash.
“We take this matter very seriously and are advising owners of these specific 2006 Ford Rangers to stop driving their vehicles so dealers can make repairs immediately,” the company said in a statement, adding that dealers will send mobile repair teams to owners’ homes and tow the vehicles to be repaired. The repairs are free and dealers will provide a free loaner vehicle.
Earlier this week, Toyota Motor expanded its safety recall involving Takata front passenger air bag inflators to cover about 601,300 additional vehicles in the United States.
Ford was notified on Dec. 22 of a crash in West Virginia that occurred on Jul. 1, 2017 involving a 2006 Ford Ranger built in North America with a ruptured non-desiccated Takata driver-side inflator. After inspecting the vehicle, Ford confirmed that the inflator ruptured, resulting in a driver fatality. It notified the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration.
This is the second fatality reported to Ford due to a Takata inflator rupture. The earlier fatality was reported in Jan. 2016.
Consumers can go to NHTSA.gov to find out if their car or truck is under recall. Search using your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). The search result will tell you if your car or truck is included in this or any other safety recall at this time.