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FORD RECALLS 1.3 MILLION PICKUPS TO FIX DEFECTIVE DOOR LATCH

Posted on Tuesday, October 24th, 2017 at 1:56 pm    

Ford recently announced that it will recall approximately 1.34 million pickup trucks in North America to address the defective indoor latch that could allow the door to swing open while the vehicle is moving. This recall is the latest recall by Ford related to defective door latches. According to an article appearing in USA Today, recalls by Ford for defective door latches are now approaching nearly 4 million vehicles and is likely to cost Ford several hundred million dollars.

The current recall effects certain Ford F150 trucks model years 2015 through 2017 and some 2017 Super-Duty F series trucks.

Ford explains that this latest recall came after they realized that the door latches could freeze or actuation cables could become bent which would prevent the door from closing or opening. Thus, “…the door may appear closed, but the latch may not fully engage the door striker with potential that the door could open while driving, increasing the risk of injury.” Ford said in a statement. Ford also said it has not identified any accidents or injuries connected to this issue.

Ford will notify owners and make the necessary repairs free of charge.

Source: An article appearing usatoday.com on October 18, 2017 entitled “Ford Door Latch Recall: Automaker to Repair 1.3 Million F-150, Super Duty Pickup Trucks” by Nathan Bomey.

ALCOHOL PLAYS A SIGNIFICANT ROLE IN HOLIDAY WEEKEND FATALITIES

Posted on Thursday, September 28th, 2017 at 1:57 pm    

Each year around the Holidays, including Labor Day, police use special patrols and check points to help deter motorists from drinking and driving. According to a recent article in the LNP, there is good statistical support for this extra effort by the police at Holidays.

According to data compiled by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, crashes, especially fatal ones, occurring during Holiday periods are far more likely to involve alcohol. In 2015, for the year as a whole, roughly 8% of crashes involved alcohol. However, that percent jumped to 15% over Holiday periods. And the jump in fatalities related to alcohol is even more significant for Holiday periods. Data for the 2015 year shows that those deaths that were related to alcohol for the year was 29%, but this percentage jumped to 48% for Holiday periods.

The percentage was even higher for the Labor Day weekend reaching a remarkable 57% of highway deaths being alcohol related. In 2015, there were 119 alcohol related crashes and 8 alcohol related fatalities over the Labor Day weekend.

The LNP article noted that in recent years, police have been increasing their effort in looking for drivers under the influence of drugs since they know that this is a growing problem.

Source: An article appearing at LNP on August 22, 2016 entitled “Data Supports Need for Holiday DUI Checks” by Tim Buckwalter.

FIAT CHRYSLER RECALLS 1.3 MILLION VEHICLES FOR DEFECTIVE BRAKES AND AIR BAGS

Posted on Thursday, August 17th, 2017 at 1:22 pm    

Fiat Chrysler recently issued 2 recalls which affect more than 1.3 million vehicles worldwide.

One recall is related to a defect that could potentially cause an inadvertent deployment of the driver side front air bags. According to Chrysler, this recall is a result of wiring that may chafe against pieces of the steering wheel trim which could potentially cause a short that might lead to a short circuit which could result in the inadvertent deployment of the driver side air bag. This recall affects about 770,000 vehicles worldwide including certain 2011 – 2015 Dodge Journeys sold in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

The second recall relates to an anti-lock braking issue involving approximately 565,000 vehicles. According to the USA Today article reporting on the recalls, the alternators in the vehicles must be replaced as a defect in the alternator can cause a compromise in the vehicles anti-lock braking system and electronic stability control. However, the company notes that basic brake function is not effected by the defect. And, the company says that while it has identified 2 accidents that could possibly be linked to the defect, no injuries have been connected with this defect. This recall affects certain 2011 – 2014 Chrysler 300s, Dodge Charger Sedans, Dodge Challenger Coups, Dodge Durango SUVs and 2012 – 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs equipped with electro-hydraulic power steering.

Dealers will repair the vehicles for free and Fiat Chrysler will notify owners when they can get the repairs done.

Source: An article appearing in USA Today on July 14, 2017 entitled “Air Bag, Brake Defects Trigger Fiat Chrysler Recalls of 1.3M Vehicles” by Eric Lawrence.

TRAMPOLINE INJURY LEADS TO BODY CAST FOR 3-YEAR-OLD BOY

Posted on Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017 at 8:05 pm    

According to an AP article, a 3-year-old Florida boy is in a cast from the waist down as a result of an injury suffered while jumping at a trampoline park. The boy’s mother stated that her 3-year-old son fractured his thigh bone while bouncing on a trampoline at an indoor park in Tampa, Florida which promoted the use of trampolines by toddlers. As a consequence, the 3-year-old has been placed by orthopedic surgeons in a Hip Spica cast for 6 weeks.

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons says that children younger than 6 years old should not be permitted on trampolines. The American Academy of Pediatricians recommends against trampoline use for any age but notes the smaller children are at a greater risk. The American Academy of Pediatricians also reports that Emergency Room visits from trampoline park users have soared from 581 in 2011 to 6,932 in 2014 as the popularity of trampoline parks have grown nationwide. Injuries from home trampolines are approximately 90,000 per year. This number has remained steady for the past several years.

According to the article, researchers have called for further investigation and actions to prevent injuries at such trampoline parks noting that there are no consistent guidelines for businesses to follow.

Interestingly, the International Association of Trampoline Parks is based in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Source: An article appearing in the LNP on July 12, 2017 entitled “Boy, 3 in Body Cast From Trampoline” by Adriana G. Licon

SUMMER DRIVING SAFTEY TIPS

Posted on Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 at 2:00 pm    

According to a recent article in the Ephrata Review, the highest number of fatal car accidents occur in the months of June and July. Here are a few safety tips offered by the Review to help have a safe summer:

1. AVOID DISTRACTIONS:
It’s recommend that before you leave, you answer any texts or voice messages and choose your radio station in advance. Adjust the volume and interior temperature of your car before you start your trip. Taking these steps should help you avoid any primary distractions while driving.

2. IF IT RAINS, TURN ON YOUR HEADLIGHTS
If it’s raining, turning your headlights on will make you more visible and help other vehicles see you.

3. CHECK YOUR TIRES
Regularly check the air pressure on your tires as under inflated tires can be dangerous and cause your tires to wear quicker. Don’t drive in the summer with winter tires on as they increase your breaking distance.

4. CHECK YOUR WINDSHIELD WIPERS
It is recommended that you change your windshield wipers every year. The rubber can wear off the wiper blades causing streaks on the windshield which will decrease visibility in bad weather.

5. INSECT IN YOUR CAR?
Remain calm! If your hand is near the window control, calmly put your window down, stop the car as soon as possible, and attempt to guide the insect out of the window or door.

Source: An article appearing in the April 2017 Supplement 2 Ephrata Review entitled “Drive Safely This Summer”.

TECHNOLOGY TO HELP KEEP TEEN DRIVERS SAFE

Posted on Monday, July 3rd, 2017 at 1:58 pm    

A new report from the CDC once again confirms that car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens in the USA. And the latest data from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reveals that teen drivers are three times more likely to be in a deadly crash than an adult driver.

The good news is that there is a slew of new teen tech driving tools out there to help. Here are a few of the most notable:

1. MYKEY: This technology offered by FORD on its cars has a number of custom setting to help keep your teen focused. For example there e are settings to limit the radio’s maximum volume, a speed limit setting, a seat belt choice and mutes the radio until the driver buckles up.

2. Chevrolet’s TEEN DRIVER TECHNOLOGY: this system works like a virtual coach that lives in the car. It also has settings similar to MyKey.

3. Apple’s DO NOT DISTURB WHILE DRIVING: This is a new feature soon to be available on iPhones. If it detects that the the phone user is in a car it silences texts, phone cals etc.

4. ACEABLE : is a new online VR drivers ed stimulator. It is a great teaching toolbar learning basic driving skills.

Source: An article appearing at usatoday.copm on june 25.2017 entitled ” Got a teen driver? Here is tech to help keep them safe” by Jennifer Jolly

PENNSYLVANIA OFFERS MOTORCYCLISTS FREE LEARN TO RIDE COURSES

Posted on Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 at 2:38 pm    

I recently wrote a blog article talking about Learn to Ride courses offered to motorcyclists at the Lancaster Harley-Davidson dealer. Another great way to learn how to ride a motorcycle safely is by taking one of the basic or advanced rider courses offered by PennDOT.

According to the Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program website, this program offers free courses to all Pennsylvania residents and active duty military personnel with a Class M permit or a motorcycle license.

The website also states that these courses are offered year round at multiple training sites throughout the state. In Lancaster County, courses are offered at the following locations:

1. Millersville Community UMC
Millersville, PA 17551

2. Lancaster County Public Safety Training Center
Manheim, PA 17545

3. Ephrata High School
Ephrata, PA 17522

The Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program offers three different levels of courses:

1. Basic Rider Course (BRC):

This course is for individuals with little or no motorcycle experience. Total instruction time is 16 hours, including a skill evaluation test at the end of the course. Students meeting the evaluation standards can receive a completion card which waives the on cycle skill test required by the state for a motorcycle endorsement to your driver’s license.

2. Basic Rider Course 2:

This is a half day/5 hour course designed for riders who want to become more comfortable riding their own motorcycles. It is a skills practice riding course which gives riders an opportunity to improve basic street riding techniques and crash avoidance maneuvers.

3. Advanced Rider Course (ARC):

A one day course designed for experienced riders who wish to learn and practice more in depth riding techniques. The goal is to help riders achieve an increase in perceptual filtering capabilities to reduce risk while riding.

All courses are taught by MSF-Certified Instructors.

Whether you are about to purchase a new motorcycle or an experienced motorcyclist, we encourage you to take one of these courses or one of the courses offered by the Lancaster Harley-Davidson dealer in order to learn the valuable skills to help you become a safer motorcyclist.

For more information on the courses offered by the Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program go to www.pamsp.com.