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NHTSA Investigates Rusty Fuel Tank Straps in Ford F-150 Pickups

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Detroit, MIThe US National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) has opened an investigation into reports concerning defects affecting the fuel tanks in Ford Co F-150 pickups model years 1997 through 2001. The issue involves fuel tanks dropping onto the road due to corroded support straps, the NY Times reports. The investigation will involve some 1.4 million pickup trucks.

"This presents a fire hazard from leaking gasoline as well as an obstruction hazard to vehicles following the subject trucks," the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said in a notice posted on its website.

Investigators are said to have received 32 reports of corrosion, including 28 reports in which one or both straps had failed resulting in the fuel tank dragging on the ground or detaching completely. There were six reports of fuel spills among the complaints, but no fires or injuries, NHTSA said.

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