Ford has issued a recall of over one million F-150 pickup trucks after mass reports of injuries from random, unwarranted airbag deployment. In February, Ford recalled 150,000 trucks, but the automaker resisted government efforts to expand the voluntary recall. However, receiving mass public criticism for its handling of the Toyota sudden acceleration issues, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration was not willing to allow Ford to handle the airbag defects on its own terms.
After millions of recalled vehicles and several years of increased costs and bad press, Toyota executives believed that they finally had reason to celebrate with the release of a NASA study declaring that Toyota vehicles did not have electronic defects that caused sudden acceleration. Last week, however, the tables turned as Toyota announced yet another recall of more than 2 million additional vehicles.
In an ongoing effort to improve the safety of motor vehicles and reduce the occurrence of injuries from car accidents, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration continually updates its safety requirements, most recently with the stricter crash testing standards and procedures. However, there is one standard that has not been updated in over 40 years, and advocates say that it is causing severe brain injuries in backseat passengers, most of whom are children.
With the increasing availability of vehicle safety features and a government push to reduce car accident injuries and fatalities on U.S. roads, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has revamped its 5-Star Safety Ratings, just in time for the automakers' newest crop of vehicles.