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Report says Ford SA ignored warnings of Kuga fire risk

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Reports have emerged which claim that Ford South Africa ignored warnings that some Kuga vehicles were in danger of catching fire spontaneously, and had done so for as long as a year.

In emails seen by Times Live, fire investigator Larry Jenkinson reportedly informed Discovery Insure about his findings in two Ford Kuga fire investigations in January 2016.

The reports caught the eye of Discovery Insure claims specialist Shawn Muller who subsequently informed Ford of Jenkinson’s findings five times between January 2016 and February 2016.

“The fire is considered to have occurred on the superheated surfaces of the exhaust manifold, the turbocharger and the catalytic converter. The combustible media that was ignited is engine oil and oil vapours that have leaked from the engine in or around the engine’s turbocharger and/or the cylinder head,” reads Jenkinson’s report.

The investigator goes on to say that the conditions of the fire are consistent with overheating problems with Ford Escapes in the United States. Escape is the name the Kuga is given the US.

Times Live also reports that Telesure rejected two claims made by Kuga owners whose vehicles caught fire.

“Those two claims were rejected as the fire was found to be caused by a mechanical fault; a standard exclusion on vehicle policies,” chief executive officer Robyn Farrell told the publication.

One of the claims that was rejected was one which involved the death of Reshall Jimmy who died because his Kuga caught fire.

Ford SA investigating Kuga fires as spare parts run out

Telesure has said it has reported all Kuga claims to Ford South Africa.

Consumer commission speaks

To date 47 Kuga’s have caught fire spontaneously and today the South African Consumer Commission is expected to announce “the way forward” as it relates to the vehicles.

The announcement is scheduled to take place at 15:00 at the Government Communication and Information Services Head Office in Pretoria.

The biggest question that we hope is answered today is whether Ford South Africa will issue a recall of the vehicles and if it does many people will be asking themselves why it took 47 vehicles catching fire, a death and a period of more than a year for action to be taken.

[Via – Times Live]


Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.