US regulators have closed the investigation into the Ford Escape’s door latches and will not seek a recall


DETROIT (AP) — U.S. auto safety regulators have closed an investigation into complaints that the doors of some Ford Escapes could open while the SUV was being driven, without requiring a recall.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says its investigation, which began last July, found that there is Low potential risk to drivers, Ford is implementing a customer satisfaction program to fix the problem.

Documents published by the agency on Friday say the investigation covered about half a million Escape SUVs from the 2020 and 2021 models.

The agency says the SUVs have an audible and visual warning if the doors are not closed properly. Ford also plans to send letters to owners in March informing them of the satisfaction campaign, which fixes the problem but stops short of a recall.

Owners can take their cars to the dealer for inspection. Dealers will either install a rivet plate to reinforce the door latch arms or provide a replacement door depending on the level of damage.

NHTSA received 593 complaints about the problem with three reports of injuries, the documents say. One needs medical attention.

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