Aftermarket Imitation Crash Parts For Ford F-150 Unsafe At Any Speed
Since I’ve spent the last thirty-years suing the automakers for safety defects, it’s not often that I agree with them. But Ford Motor Co. confirms for its Ford F-150 pickup what my crash test found for the Honda Fit. So called aftermarket crash parts which are cheap imitations of Original Equipment Manufacturer parts, are unsafe if not deadly in a wreck.
Ford crash tested an aftermarket hood and aftermarket front bumper brackets for the 2012 F-150. It concluded from the independent tests, “that even slight changes in materials or deviation from proper procedures can have severe consequences.”
Ford conducted its test in the wake of a $42 Million verdict by a Dallas County Jury in my lawsuit against a collision center for using a Non-OEM repair procedure. The collision center’s manager testified that they did not follow OEM standards that called for the use of 108 welds to replace a hail damaged roof on a 2010 Honda Fit. Instead he testified that they used glue if they wanted to get paid by State Farm Insurance.
Crash Test of Aftermarket Honda Fit Parts Documents Catastrophic Injuries
The Tracy Law Firm with the support of the vehicle safety professionals at the Auto Body Association of Texas (ABAT) and other associations conducted three crash tests of similar model Honda Fits at Karco Engineering in December of 2017. A 2013 Honda Fit equipped with NON-OEM aftermarket crash parts resulted in catastrophic injury data recorded by two sophisticated crash test dummies in the driver and front passenger seats.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) issued an Industry Advisory spinning our aftermarket crash test results into a “Good Rating”. If you check out their industry member group online, you may get the impression that the IIHS is a boot licking car insurance industry lap dog.
I am on a nationwide crusade speaking to the vehicle safety professions in collision industry associations around the country about the importance properly restoring a vehicle’s crash safety systems. I’ve heard horror story after horror story of how the auto insurance companies try to bully vehicle safety professionals into using shoddy aftermarket parts that are cheap imitations of OEM parts as well as force collision centers not to follow OEM repair standards.
Those horror stories are potential nightmares for a collision center’s customers. This past Wednesday I spoke to the Winter 2018 AkzoNobel Acoat Selected North American Performance Group Meeting in San Antonio. You can download my presentation here: Anatomy of A Crisis — Getting Vehicle Safety Professionals RFocused On Fighting The Insurance Industry by Vehicle Safety Lawyer Todd Tracy
An audible gasp went up from more than 200 vehicle safety professionals when I showed photographs of the injuries sustained by Matthew and Marcia Seebachan when their 2010 Honda Fit with a glued on roof crushed them and burned Mathew’s feet and lower legs to the bone. The head of the Burn Unit for the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center testified that based on her recently completed study of burn patients for the past 25 years, Matthew would suffer the equivalent pain of childbirth everyday for the rest of his life.
I have stressed that the Auto Insurance Bullies have never run a single crash test to support the crashworthiness of Non-OEM repairs and aftermarket parts that they try to cram down the throats of honest collision repair businesses every day.
Ford Takes The Pole Position On Aftermarket Part Safety Issue
The vehicle safety professionals in the collision repair industry and I have been running the alone until now.
Kudos to the Ford Motor Company. Ford just took the pole position on this important safety issue for their customers.
Ford warned it’s dealers in the latest issue of On Target which you can download here. Ford Warns Dealers About Unsafe Aftermarket Crash Parts In On Target – 2018, Vol. 1
Ford Motor Company supports my view stating, “All components of the vehicle structure are designed and tested to work together in a real-world collision,” says FCSD Collision Product Team Manager Lisa Fournier. “Any significant deviations from engineering specifications, such as changes in materials, forming processes, dimensional inaccuracies and any structural differences, along with how it is repaired, can dramatically alter the crash characteristics of a vehicle.”
Now it’s time for the rest of the automakers to get in the race and and start warning the public. You can draft behind me all day long if it’s in the name of crashworthiness and safety.
Can The IIHS Auto Insurance Lapdog Bite The Hand That Feeds It?
Once again I am calling on IIHS or an Auto Insurance Company representative to meet me center stage at SEMA 2018 to debate the crashworthiness of aftermarket parts. Their silence is DEAFENING!
You can read more about Ford’s aftermarket crash parts test at Body Shop Business.