Ford recalls 2M pickup trucks after seat belts cause fires

DETROIT (AP) - Under pressure from U.S. safety regulators, Ford is recalling about 2 million F-150 pickups in North America because the seat belts can cause fires.

The recall covers certain trucks from the 2015 through 2018 model years.

The company says it has 23 reports of smoke or fire in the U.S. and Canada, but it's not aware of any injuries. The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began investigating the fires last month after getting five reports. Fires destroyed three trucks.

Ford says some seat belt pretensioners can generate excessive sparks when they tighten the belts before a crash. That can ignite gases inside a support beam and cause insulation and carpet to catch fire.

Dealers will remove insulation and install heat-resistant tape. Owners will be notified starting Sept. 24.

Affected vehicles include:

  • 2015-18 Ford F-150 vehicles built at Dearborn Assembly Plant, March 12, 2014 through Aug. 23, 2018
  • 2015-18 Ford F-150 vehicles built at Kansas City Assembly Plant, Aug. 20, 2014 through Aug. 23, 2018

According to Ford, this relates to 1,619,112 vehicles in the U.S., 339,884 in Canada and 36,780 in Mexico. The Ford reference number for this recall is 18S27.

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