The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is investigating 346,000 Ford Escape sport utility vehicles (SUVs) because a weld in the door assembly may fail. This could potentially result in a door inadvertently opening while driving, which could increase the risk of injury or property damage.
The NHTSA has received 118 questionnaires alleging a failure of the spot welds in the check arm bracket for the front doors in 2020-21 Ford Escape vehicles. These reports include 25 minor injuries and one report of minor property damage.
The NHTSA is currently investigating the scope of the issue and whether it is a safety defect. If the agency determines that the issue is a safety defect, it could issue a recall for the affected vehicles.
In the meantime, Ford has issued a technical service bulletin to dealers advising them to inspect the spot welds in the check arm bracket for the front doors on 2020-21 Ford Escape vehicles. If the welds are found to be defective, the dealer will replace the check arm bracket.
Owners of 2020-21 Ford Escape vehicles who are concerned about the door weld failure issue should contact their Ford dealer. You can also check the NHTSA website to see if your vehicle is affected by the investigation.