Feds expand probe into possible carbon monoxide leaks in Ford Explorers


The agency says it will examine Explorer Police Interceptor vehicles.

CBS News reports that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received more than 2,700 complaints about exhaust reaching the passenger cabin of the SUV. In that time, 62 workers' comp reports have been filed by officers for exposure to carbon monoxide.

"When she was treated at the hospital, we had requested testing for carbon monoxide and her levels came out near lethal", said Henderson Police Department Captain James Thibodeaux.

Friday's move comes as USA auto safety regulators investigate complaints of exhaust fume problems in more than 1 million Explorers from the 2011 through 2017 model years. Most of the reported injuries indicated nausea, headaches or light-headedness, though two police incidents alleged crashes with injuries, and a third police incident also reported injury, allegedly from carbon-monoxide exposure.

In 2015, a California police officer passed out while behind the wheel of his Interceptor and crashed into a tree at 55 miles per hour.

Sergeant Zachary LaHood's dashcam was rolling as he called for help.

Officials with the Oklahoma City Police Department say they have had no carbon monoxide incidents within the department. Departments across the country have added carbon monoxide detectors.

NHTSA has conducted field inspections of vehicles and crashes involving police units that occurred while the officers were on duty.

She traded her 2014 Ford Explorer in for a 2017, but says the problem didn't go away.

"It's frustrating because at this point, I don't know what I am going to do", said Jones.

"The safety of our officers and employees is our number one priority", said city spokesman Bryce Bencivengo.

"We have investigated and not found any carbon monoxide issue resulting from the design of our Police Interceptor Utility Vehicles", Ford said in a statement earlier this month. "In the case of Police Interceptors, odors can be caused by non-Ford modifications or repairs that were not properly sealed".