1. #26
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    Have you got a Crown Vic....as a chief's vehicle?

    DALLAS (AP) - The City Council decided Wednesday not to buy any
    more Ford Crown Victoria police cruisers, which have come under
    increasing criticism as being prone to burn when rear-ended at high
    speeds.
    "We did that today informally as a council upon advice of our
    attorney," Dallas Mayor Laura Miller said. "I go to the U.S.
    Conference of Mayors on Friday, and I'd like to get a lot more
    vocal about the fact that we have a major problem that Ford isn't
    recognizing. Ford needs to do something," Miller said.
    Police unions and some political leaders have complained about
    the safety record of the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor,
    manufactured by Ford Motor Co. Roughly 350,000 of the vehicles are
    on the nation's roads as patrol cars for four in five police
    departments.
    Since 1983, 14 officers - including one from Dallas - have died
    in crashes when the gas tank of their Crown Victorias caught fire
    after being hit from behind.
    The automaker has denied the cars are dangerous but has been
    retrofitting older models with plastic shields designed to better
    protect the gas tanks.
    A Dallas police officer was killed on Oct. 23 when his Crown
    Victoria was hit from behind and burst into flames as he was
    working off-duty with a construction crew on an expressway. The
    family and Dallas sued Ford.
    U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., on Wednesday urged the
    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to reopen its
    investigation into deadly gas tank explosions involving the Crown
    Victoria.

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  2. #27
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    Post MORE

    WASHINGTON (AP) - The recent death of a Missouri state trooper
    has prompted a New York senator to call on the federal government
    to reopen its investigation into Ford Motor Co.'s Crown Victoria,
    the most popular model police car.
    Sen. Charles Schumer sent a letter to the National Highway
    Traffic Safety Administration on Wednesday, urging the agency to
    look into the issue of deadly gas tank explosions on the Crown
    Victoria.
    "We know that there's a problem, and now we need to figure out
    what we need to do to lve it," the New York Democrat said in a
    statement. "If that means changing cars so that a different model
    is used, so be it. Time is of the essence."
    Police unions and some political leaders have complained about
    the safety record of the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor. About
    350,000 of the vehicles are on the nation's roads as patrol cars
    for approximately 80 percent of police departments.
    Since 1983, 14 officers have died in crashes when their Crown
    Victoria's gas tank caught fire after being hit from behind.
    The most recent occurred in western Missouri last week, when a
    25-year-old trooper died in a fiery wreck while pulled over on an
    interstate. Last December, New York state trooper Robert Ambrose
    was killed on a Yonkers highway when his patrol car was struck from
    behind. Ambrose's family is suing Ford.
    The automaker has denied the cars are dangerous, but initiated a
    program of retrofitting older models with plastic shields designed
    to better protect the gas tanks.
    Ambrose's vehicle did not have the shield; the victim in the
    Missouri wreck, Trooper Micheal Newton, did have a shield on his
    vehicle.
    A 10-mon probe by the NHTSA determined last November that
    vehicles with the Crown Victoria's fuel system involved in a rear
    crash caught fire 8 percent of the time, compared to 6.3 percent
    with the fuel system used in the comparable Chevrolet Caprice.
    NHTSA said the car meets current federal standards that require
    a vehicle to withstand a rear crash at 30 miles per hour without
    leaking fuel. The agency also said the vehicle did not leak fuel
    during a test at 50 miles per hour, which the agency has proposed
    to be the new standard.
    The agency said almost all of the fuel leaks occurred after a
    very high-speed crash.
    ---
    On the Net:
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  3. #28
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    It's good to see that they are actually doing something about this. Now I will have to see if I can get that retrofit in my own Crown Vic (it's my POV but used for duty calls).

    I also think the few people who wish to absolve the auto manufacturers from their responsibility need to see the Frontline Report entitled "Rollover: The Hidden History of the SUV."

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/rollover/

    This report clearly shows how Ford and other manufacturers Covered up the known hazards of the early Explorers and similar SUVs to protect thenselves from liability. Even when they were told by their own engineers that a small and cheap change of wheelbase would solve the issue, they covered up the report and ignored the change.

    Major Corporations do stupid things like this all the time at the advice of their lawyers. Trust me I know. In my day job I fill the role of minor accident adjuster here at our Ski/Golf Resort and I dread it when the lawyer calls with his "Advice". But that is the unfortunate way "business" runs.
    Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!

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    I still stand by my thought that if they are meeting and exceeding Federal Safety Standards in rear impact crashes, then the safety is no longer the manufactuers issue. Why are the cars being hit at high rates of speed? Start jailing the drucks and tired peole that are running into the cars and causing the fire in the first place. I that Ford has done more than I would do. I know it is PR, but you bought the car when you had the ability to find out what its testing standards are. It is now yours, if you are not happy about a part of it, modify it.

  5. #30
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    CHP Camaro's

    I think all the police should drive these =)

  6. #31
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    Default Cite "em

    The biggest issue with the tanks is the two bolts just ahead of it.It might be worthy to note that there is a TSB for seat belt problems as well.The shields help by deflecting the energy around the tank and the afore mentioned bolts but if you think that they still can't catch fire,you would be sadly mistaken.Put the tanks anywhere you want but unless they're fuel cells;you hit the vehicle hard enough it will rupture.I've been repairing vehicles for over a quarter of a century,been involved with towing them a lot longer than that.You hit a 'burban with loaded semi,it will burn.Somebody else had a good idea,if a Public safety officer is rear ended cite the other driver and make the fine large enough to hurt.Or lift their license for a couple of years.Too many people today follow WAY too close.I've got about fifty of the results in the yard.T.C.
    Last edited by Rescue101; 06-18-2003 at 08:46 AM.

  7. #32
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    INDEPENDENCE, Mo. (AP) - The family of a state trooper killed in
    a rear-end collision last month filed a lawsuit Tuesday against
    Ford Motor Co., charging that the location of his car's fuel tank
    was partly responsible for it catching fire.
    A man who Trooper Micheal Newton had pulled over, and was seated
    in the car with Newton at the time of the collision and was
    injured, filed a similar lawsuit.
    The lawsuits, filed in Jackson County by Newton's family and
    Michael Nolte of Leawood, Kan., are the latest in a series of
    claims against Ford for its design of the Crown Victoria Police
    Interceptor.
    Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said she couldn't comment on the
    suits, but said the company stands behind its vehicle.
    Kinley said the cars are not defective and claimed deaths
    attributed to the fuel tank's location - between the rear axle and
    rear bumper - are instead a result of the high speeds at which
    patrol cars have been struck alongside highways.
    "The issue is the really unique use of the vehicle," Kinley
    said.
    Newton, 25, was killed May 22 when his patrol car was struck by
    a pickup truck towing a flatbed trailer on eastbound Interstate 70,
    near Higginsville in western Missouri.
    Passersby were able to pull Nolte from the car, but Newton was
    pinned and burned to death after the crash.
    Tom Jones, one of Nolte's attorneys, claimed in a release issued
    Tuesday at least 15 law enforcement officers have died and at least
    nine have been seriously injured since 1983 in crashes involving
    Crown Victoria police cars.
    J. Kent Emison, a lawyer for Newton's family, said the trooper
    was the sole supporter of his 27-year-old wife and 5-year-old
    child.
    Both suits seek unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
    Another defendant is the company that owned the pickup truck
    that struck Newton's vehicle from behind. The suit says the driver
    was careless and negligent.

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  8. #33
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    I just read an article last week about a Florida Highway
    Patrol officer getting an award for Installing a Kevlar
    trunk orginizer that is simple to install and easy to use
    I dont know if he designed it or any details but the article
    was in the Tallahassee Democrat. As for ffengine04

  9. #34
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    Post New Tests In Texas

    By LISA FALKENBERG
    Associated Press Writer
    DALLAS (AP) - Crash tests ordered by Dallas officials
    investigating the safety of Ford Motor Co.'s Crown Victoria have
    shown that a safety device Ford designed to address concerns with
    fuel leakage after crashes actually makes the problem worse, the
    city's attorney announced Tuesday.
    Ford's attorney dismissed the results as preliminary.
    A test conducted last week on a Crown Victoria equipped with a
    plastic Trunk Pack - designed to keep sharp police equipment from
    puncturing the fuel tank during a crash - resulted in a 7.6-gallon
    fuel leakage, far more than the .3 gallons of leakage that resulted
    from a similar test Ford conducted last year without the Trunk
    Pack, said Dallas City Attorney Madeleine Johnson.
    "It's gushing," Johnson said as she showed reporters a video
    of the fuel tank she said had been ripped at the seam by impact of
    the Trunk Pack hitting the fuel tank during the 75 mph crash.
    "This tank essentially split like a watermelon."
    Jeff Tillotson, the Dallas lawyer representing Ford, said the
    company stands by the trademarked plastic drop-in box as a method
    to decrease fuel tank punctures that can lead to explosions and
    criticized Johnson for drawing conclusions from preliminary
    results.
    "It may be a faulty conclusion and then you're actually putting
    police officers at risk," Tillotson said. "What troubles Ford is
    that police officers might make life and death decisions on whether
    or not to use the Trunk Pack on the basis of incomplete
    information."
    Johnson said she rushed to release the crash test results in
    order to warn other law enforcement agencies against using the
    Trunk Packs. While an analysis is still being conducted, she said
    the results on the leakage that occurred using the Trunk Pack are
    solid.
    "I can assure you that's not going in one of our police cars,"
    Johnson said of the Trunk Pack. "All three tests were conducted.
    All three tests failed miserably."
    Ford began direct mailing its fleet customers in June about the
    device, part of an upgrade kit to ward against fuel tank punctures
    that may lead to explosions after high-speed crashes in the
    nation's most popular model police car. Tillotson said he did not
    know how many agencies use the Trunk Pack.
    Since 1983, more than a dozen officers have died in crashes when
    their Crown Victoria's gas tank caught fire after being hit from
    behind, including Dallas police Officer Patrick Metzler. Metzler
    died Oct. 23 when his Crown Victoria cruiser was hit from behind
    and burst into flames.
    The automaker has denied the cars are dangerous, but initiated a
    program of retrofitting older models with plastic shields designed
    to better protect the gas tanks. Ford offers a kit that includes
    the shields and Trunk Packs.
    Dallas has a lawsuit pending against Ford in an effort to
    determine whether the popular police cruiser is safe for law
    enforcement.
    Johnson said the crash tests were conducted by an independent
    engineering firm and paid for out-of-pocket by attorneys
    representing Dallas, a fact that led Ford's attorney to further
    question the integrity of the findings.
    "We're suspicious of any test conducted by plaintiff's lawyers
    and announced at press conferences," Tillotson said.
    Johnson said the city requested the tests in part because Dallas
    officials learned Ford had not performed crash tests. Dallas
    purchased 10 of the $250 Trunk Packs, but didn't want to use them
    on any of the police department's 750 Crown Victorias until
    officials were sure the devices were safe, she said.
    "I just find it shocking that something that was supposed to be
    a safety device was never tested," she said. She said Ford
    declined to participate in Dallas' crash test.
    Tillotson said Ford did some level of testing, though it may not
    have been a crash test. He could not provide details. A call to
    Ford seeking clarification on testing was not immediately returned
    to The Associated Press.
    Johnson said the Dallas tests were conducted using the same
    procedures and specifications Ford uses. In the test that resulted
    in 7.6 gallons of leakage with the Trunk Pack, no police equipment
    was stored in the trunk, Johnson said. Two other tests using
    routine police equipment in the trunks resulted in about 17 gallons
    leakage, with and without the Trunk Pack.
    Johnson sent a letter with the results of the crash test to
    Ford's general Counsel and to the National Highway Traffic Safety
    Administration.
    "Ford has acted in a very irresponsible manner," Johnson said.
    "This is a very significant safety issue and we're not going to
    let it just die out."
    Ford says more than 80 percent of police vehicles in North
    America are Crown Victoria Police Interceptors.

    ---
    Crown Victoria Police Interceptor: http://www.cvpi.com/

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  10. #35
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    Post July 30th

    DETROIT (AP) - The nation's chief traffic safety official says
    it would be difficult for any vehicle to withstand the high-speed
    rear collisions that have caused deadly fuel tank fires in Ford
    Motor Co.'s Crown Victoria police cruisers.
    National Transportation Safety Administration chief Jeffrey
    Runge that he stands by the safety of the Crown Victoria sedans,
    which in May received the top safety rating from NHTSA in crash
    tests.
    Controversy and lawsuits continue to swirl around the cars,
    which are in wide use by police nationwide.
    Police agencies would have to pay more than $100,000 each for a
    line of cars that never would suffer explosions during such
    crashes, Runge told the Detroit Free Press for a story Thursday.
    "The real question is: Are government agencies going to be
    willing to invest in a special vehicle that's impervious to any
    peril?" Runge said, adding that such a vehicle does not exist.
    "But I'm sure that if they were willing to pay six-figure sums
    for every vehicle, somebody would design one," he said.
    During the past several years, more than a dozen officers across
    the country have been killed by fuel tank fires after Crown
    Victorias have been involved in high-speed rear end collisions.
    Runge said speeds during some of those crashes have been so high
    - upward of 70 mph - that NHTSA cannot realistically expect every
    vehicle to withstand the impact.
    The agency first investigated the Crown Victoria beginning in
    November 2001, when police agencies reported fuel tank leaks and
    fires after rear end crashes. The probe was closed in October after
    NHTSA found the car met fuel-integrity standards. It also found the
    risk of fire per fatal rear crash comparable to Chevrolet Caprice
    police cars.
    Runge said investigations into crashes since have not found
    defects.
    "I'm very confident that our defects investigation office did
    more than due diligence," he said.
    Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said Runge's comment "just
    validates what we've been saying all along," she said.
    Ford has denied the cars are dangerous but last year retrofitted
    the 350,000 Crown Victoria police cars on the road with plastic
    fuel-tank shields. About 85 percent of all police departments and
    state troopers use the vehicles.
    But some police departments have said Ford's fixes are
    inadequate and suggest that Ford use fuel tank bladders, reinforced
    liners for fuel tanks. Ford has said the bladders leaked during its
    durability tests.
    ---
    On the Net:
    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,
    http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov
    Ford Motor Co., http://www.ford.com/

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  11. #36
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    Smile Food For Thought........

    If I've followed this correctly, There have been a number of Police LODD's where the Police officer was in a Crown Vic that was struck by another vehicle, mostly rearended. As far as Fire personnel fatalities in Crown Vics, I haven't noticed any (if there was, I missed it. Sorry.) Has the light bulb come on yet? Police Officers, by the very nature of their work, find themselves sitting on the side of the road, or worse yet, IN the road, for periods of time. Highway patrol work is, by nature, lots and lots of hours of this activity, EVERY PAY PERIOD. By contrast, We respond to a call, and find ourselves out of, and usually away from, the car quickly. Chances are excellent that if someone hits a FD Car that is parked, there will not be any FD injuries, because the car is empty. But, just in case, we have disposed of our Crown Vic and replaced it with a '03 F150 4dr cab, 4X4, Pickup. This unit is being outfitted with a rollout command post desk and other items so it can function as our mobile command post. Stay Safe....
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
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  12. #37
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    Thumbs up

    Excellent observation! I also, have not heard of any other incidents of Crown Victorias having similar fire related problems. Consider the thousands, if not millions of Crown Vic taxi cabs, and as you mention, staff vehicles of fire departments. Perhaps the problem does stem from the fact that these PD vehicles are more likely to be parked on the side of a highway...making them more vulnerable to rear collisions.

    Good point!

    On the Net:
    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,
    http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov
    Ford Motor Co., http://www.ford.com/
    Last edited by NJFFSA16; 08-01-2003 at 12:12 AM.
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  13. #38
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    NJ and Hwoods...excellent points!

    Ther was a crash that seriously injured a Massachusetts State Trooper on 7/26. Her Crown Victoria cruiser was in the breakdown lane of Route 25 (a limited access highway that goes from I-495 to the Cape Cod) in Wareham, with its warning lights on when it was struck from behind by a Volvo at an estimated 90 MPH by an 18 year old male who has been charged with DWI.

    The car did not burst into flames; she suffered major head trauma when she impacted the steering wheel/dash/windshield area and was MedFlighted to Boston Medical Center.

    Realistcally, nobody can build a vehicle that will withstand a very high speed crash from the rear, unless we want our police forces to drive in M1A1 Abrams tanks. On a lighter note, the Abrams' 105mm gun would be a crime and speed deterrent!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

  14. #39
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    TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) - Ford Motor Co. said Wednesday it
    will begin offering fire-suppression technology on its Crown
    Victoria police cars, which have been linked to numerous deaths in
    rear-end collisions that caused gas-tank explosions.
    Ford spokeswoman Carolyn Brown confirmed the new equipment would
    be used but said details were being withheld until a news
    conference Thursday in New York.
    At an automotive seminar Wednesday in this resort city, Ford
    president and chief operating officer Nick Scheele declined to
    discuss the new technology.
    About the Crown Victoria, Scheele told reporters, "It's a very
    safe vehicle, but it's got some very difficult usage conditions."
    Police unions and some political leaders have complained about
    the safety record of the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, which
    is used by about 85 percent of all police departments.
    Since 1983, 14 officers have died in crashes when their Crown
    Victoria's gas tank caught fire after being hit from behind.
    Louisiana Attorney General Richard Ieyoub said in January that
    he would consider filing a lawsuit against Ford unless it studied
    and fixed alleged problems with the car.
    Dallas police Officer Patrick Metzler died Oct. 23 when his
    Crown Victoria cruiser was hit from behind and burst into flames.
    In the past several years, the cars have been the subject of
    numerous lawsuits and a federal investigation.
    Although Ford denies the cars are dangerous, about a year ago
    the company initiated a program of retrofitting older models with
    plastic shields designed to better protect the gas tanks.
    It is unclear if Ford will install the new fire-suppression
    technology in Crown Victorias sold to the public.
    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has said the
    car meets current federal standards that require a vehicle to
    withstand a rear crash at 30 miles per hour without leaking fuel.
    The agency also said the vehicle did not leak fuel during a test at
    50 miles per hour, which the agency has proposed to be the new
    standard.
    Ford shares rose 13 cents to close at $10.65 in trading
    Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange.
    ---
    On the Net:
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  15. #40
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    NEW YORK (AP) - Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will offer
    fire-suppression technology as an option on Crown Victoria police
    cars, which have been linked to numerous deaths in rear-end
    collisions that caused gas-tank explosions.
    The technology will be available for vehicles in 2005. Police
    cars on the road now cannot be retrofitted because the system uses
    advanced electronics and onboard sensors that must be integrated
    into a new computer system, Ford said.
    About 85 percent of all police departments use Crown Victorias.
    Since 1983, 14 officers have died in crashes when gas tanks
    erupted in flames after Crown Victorias were hit from behind.
    Critics say the behind-the-axle design of the tanks makes them
    vulnerable. When the cars are struck, the tank can wrap around the
    axle, be punctured by sharp bolts and explode.
    The new technology will not be available to the public because
    it's a sophisticated product designed for professional use, said
    Susan Cischke, Ford vice president for environmental and safety
    engineering.
    Though Ford denies the cars are dangerous, the company about a
    year ago introduced a program of fitting older models with plastic
    shields to protect the gas tanks.
    "We think the vehicles out there are safe. ... And the trunk
    packs have been able to prevent sharp objects from puncturing the
    vehicle," Cischke said.
    Ford said it isn't introducing the optional technology in
    response to lawsuits the company has been facing or because of any
    design defects.
    "We're doing this to make our vehicles safe and everything we
    can to make them even safer," said Brenda Hines, a Ford
    spokeswoman.
    Safety expert Clarence Ditlow, executive director for the Center
    for Auto Safety in Washington, D.C., was disappointed with Ford's
    response.
    "Today's officers need protection, not two years from now.
    Safety should not be an option, it should be standard equipment,"
    he said.
    The company said it was too soon to say how much the option
    would cost because it's still in development.

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


    By JANET PAK
    Associated Press Writer
    NEW YORK (AP) - Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will offer
    fire-supression technology as an option on Crown Victoria police
    cars, which have been linked to numerous deaths in rear-end
    collisions that caused gas-tank explosions.
    The technology will be available for vehicles in 2005. Police
    cars on the road now cannot be retrofitted because the system uses
    advanced electronics and onboard sensors that must be integrated
    into a new computer system, Ford said.
    About 85 percent of all police departments use Crown Victorias.
    Since 1983, 14 officers have died in crashes when gas tanks
    erupted in flames after Crown Victorias were hit from behind.
    Critics say the behind-the-axle design of the tanks makes them
    vulnerable. When the cars are struck, the tank can wrap around the
    axle, be punctured by sharp bolts and explode.
    The new technology will not be available to the public because
    it's a sophisticated product designed for professional use, said
    Susan Cischke, Ford vice president for environmental and safety
    engineering.
    Though Ford denies the cars are dangerous, the company about a
    year ago introduced a program of fitting older models with plastic
    shields to protect the gas tanks.
    "We think the vehicles out there are safe. ... And the trunk
    packs have been able to prevent sharp objects from puncturing the
    vehicle," Cischke said.
    Ford said it isn't introducing the optional technology in
    response to lawsuits the company has been facing or because of any
    design defects.
    "We're doing this to make our vehicles safe and everything we
    can to make them even safer," said Brenda Hines, a Ford
    spokeswoman.
    Safety expert Clarence Ditlow, executive director for the Center
    for Auto Safety in Washington, D.C., was disappointed with Ford's
    response.
    "Today's officers need protection, not two years from now.
    Safety should not be an option, it should be standard equipment,"
    he said.
    The company said it was too soon to say how much the option
    would cost because it's still in development.
    ---
    On the Net:
    Ford Motor Co.: http://www.ford.com

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  16. #41
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    ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer urged the Ford
    Motor Co. Tuesday to retrofit Crown Victoria police cruisers with a
    fire suppression system Ford will offer as an option on 2005
    models.
    "It's great that Ford has come up with this new system for its
    2005 models, but what about the 350,000 police cars that are
    already on the road?" Schumer said.
    In announcing the new technology last week, Ford said police
    cars on the road now cannot be retrofitted because the system uses
    advanced electronics and onboard sensors that must be integrated
    into a new computer system.
    Schumer said Ford should be able to overcome those hurdles.
    "Although installing the new fire safety system in these
    vehicles may create logistical and structural challenges, I am
    confident that Ford's world-class engineers will be able to resolve
    such problems," the New York Democrat said in a letter to CEO
    William Clay Ford Jr.
    Police unions and others say the Crown Victoria model made for
    patrol duty, the Police Interceptor (CVPI), bursts into flames when
    hit from behind at high speeds. Schumer said at least 45 police
    officers have been killed or burned in fires following rear-end
    collisions with CVPIs.
    Ford said the great speeds involved in the accidents caused the
    fires and that no model can be fireproofed under those
    circumstances.
    However, Ford announced last Thursday that it will offer a fire
    suppression system on Police Interceptors starting with the 2005
    model. The system will release chemicals to douse fires in the
    vehicle's fuel system following a severe accident, giving officers
    time to get out of their vehicles.
    Schumer said Ford's announcement last week was an acknowledgment
    that safety weaknesses exist in the Police Interceptor.
    "You have shown that you will provide the highest safety
    standards possible in the 2005 cruiser and I strongly encourage you
    to do the same with all other CVPIs in use," Schumer told Ford.
    Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said the company has developed
    the suppression system, the fuel tank shield and a trunk pack to
    prevent objects in the back of police cruisers like flares from
    being shot into the fuel tank during a rear-end accident.
    "We have already advanced the safety of the Crown Victoria
    Police Interceptor well beyond governmental regulations or industry
    practice," she said Tuesday. "However, until we as a society
    eliminate high-speed accidents, we will never eliminate the risk of
    fire."
    Schumer also called for protective bladders, similar to those
    used in some race cars, to be put into Police Interceptor fuel
    tanks to prevent punctures. Kinley said Ford has found the bladders
    do not hold up over the high miles and heavy duty driving
    experienced by Police Interceptors.
    About 1,100 CVPIs are in use by New York State Police. The
    models were fitted with a plastic shield that added protections to
    the fuel tank starting late last year. Trooper Robert Ambrose was
    killed last December when his CVPI, without the tank shield, was
    smashed into by a drunken driver on the New York State Thruway in
    Yonkers.
    Daniel De Federicis, president of the state trooper Police
    Benevolent Association, said hundreds of his members are driving
    what he termed "ticking time bombs."
    "It is insulting to troopers for Ford to announce grand plans
    that won't be implemented until two years from now," De Federicis
    said Tuesday. "These plans would be acceptable if they were
    coupled with immediate solutions that were implemented today and
    actually work."

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    Federal investigators clear Crown Victoria in Missouri trooper's
    death
    By JIM SUHR
    Associated Press Writer
    ST. LOUIS (AP) - The gas tank of a Missouri state highway
    patrolman's Ford Crown Victoria was not to blame when the cruiser
    burst into flames after being slammed from behind during a traffic
    stop, killing the officer, federal investigators have ruled.
    Gas tanks in Crown Victorias have been scrutinized following a
    number of fiery wrecks that killed law enforcers, but the National
    Highway Traffic Safety Administration said the gas tank of Trooper
    Michael Newton's vehicle was not compromised in the collision.
    "There wasn't any evidence of a safety-related defect," NHTSA
    spokesman Rae Tyson said Wednesday.
    Newton, 25, had pulled over a driver on Interstate 70 in western
    Missouri last May and was parked along the highway's eastbound
    shoulder when his car was hit from behind by a pickup truck and
    burst into flames.
    The crash wedged Newton's car door shut, trapping him, federal
    investigators said. The motorist he'd pulled over was rescued by
    two motorists from Newton's passenger seat; he was badly burned but
    survived.
    The NHTSA report said the fire began after something still
    unknown ignited gasoline that apparently spewed from the vehicle's
    filler tube, which was severed in the crash. The filler tube - the
    channel where gasoline is pumped into the gas tank during refueling
    - could have become disconnected in any type of vehicle struck from
    behind at that speed, the investigators concluded.
    "NHTSA is confirming what we've been trying to say all along -
    the Crown Victoria is just as safe if not safer than the comparable
    competitor," Ford spokeswoman Kristen Kinley said from the
    company's headquarters in Dearborn, Mich.
    Capt. Chris Ricks, a spokesman for the patrol, said NHTSA's
    findings mirrored those of a patrol-hired consultant - and that the
    patrol remains comfortable about the safety of Crown Victorias,
    accounting for nearly all of the agency's roughly 800-car fleet.
    "We're very aware of the crash that took Trooper Newton's life,
    but we feel safe with the vehicle we're using," Ricks said. "What
    we've lost focus of is that, had the driver of the truck been
    obeying the law and moved to the left (to give Newton's car
    clearance), this would have been a moot point. That's been glossed
    over."
    Last October, Daniel pleaded guilty in Lafayette County to
    misdemeanors including failure to yield to an emergency vehicle. He
    was sentenced in December to six months in jail and about $1,900 in
    fines, followed by two years of probation.
    Lawsuits filed by Newton's family and Nolte claimed the location
    of the Crown Victoria's fuel tank was partly to blame for the car
    igniting.
    A message left Wednesday with the Newton family's attorney was
    not immediately returned.
    In recent years, police and safety groups had questioned the
    safety of Crown Victoria gas tanks, given crash-related fires
    blamed in the deaths of at least a dozen officers nationwide since
    1983.
    In October 2002, NHTSA said a 10-month investigation found no
    defect in the cars, that the Crown Victoria exceeds federal
    standards for fuel system safety, and that the rate of fires was
    not much greater than with Chevrolet Caprice police cars.
    Still, Ford - in the wake of the government's investigation -
    agreed to retrofit the 350,000 Crown Victoria police cars
    nationwide with shields around the gas tank. Newton's car had such
    a shield.
    Ford also agreed to pay for the modifications and study ways to
    bolster safety in the cars, broadly used by police agencies across
    the country.
    ---
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  18. #43
    expvol
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    Default NTHSA Sinks fuel tank dispute

    Read This

    Virtually any type of vehicle struck from behind at high speeds could have suffered damage similar to that sustained by Trooper Michael Newton's cruiser, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.
    There wasn't any evidence of a safety-related defect," Rae Tyson, a NHTSA spokesman, said Wednesday.
    the channel where gasoline is pumped into the gas tank during refueling -- could have become disconnected in any type of vehicle struck from behind at that speed, the investigators concluded.
    Still, Ford -- in the wake of the government's investigation -- agreed to retrofit the 350,000 Crown Victoria police cars nationwide with shields around the gas tank. Newton's car had such a shield.
    But "from our standpoint, there's no safety defect with the Crown Victoria," Tyson said.

    Well if those shields are soo good, why did his car blow up?
    IT IS NOT WITH THE TANK. It is the positon that the car is put in, No other car is put into the position that a police car is. And it goes to show that the shields dont work.

    Stop wasting all the darn energy suing ford and put it into something productive, like getting fuel cells for the cars, face it nothing is going to protect your gas tank if it is hit from behind at 70mph!!! Only a fuel cell can help, look at the nascar cars, they have them. But they still have fires due to collisions at 130mph!!!
    So if you want to have a car after a rearending, get a fuel cell, I just did that verything, for my 1994 crown victoria that I am trying to get running, I bought a fuel cell and installed it.
    Enough of my ranting and raving.

  19. #44
    expvol
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    Default

    Originaly quoted by NJFFSA16

    "It's great that Ford has come up with this new system for its
    Fuel Cells, that is the answer.

  20. #45
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    Fuel cells or bladders may be the answer...but FORD isn't going to retrofit all the Crown Vics with them. If an owner wants to make the installation...Ford will not pay for such installation. You see...Ford doesn't agree there is any problem. And a department with hundreds of Crown Vics couldn't possibly afford to equip them all with fuel cells/bladders.
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  21. #46
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    Well I happen to agree with Ford.The root of the problem isn't totally in the design but in the aftermath of severe shock loading.Fuel cell help?Yep but an even bigger help would be adressing the REAL problem.HIGHWAY MORONS.Officer killed/injured when hit by DUI driver.Lift said drivers license for FIVE years.If said driver is found driving after suspension lift their license for LIFE!We've got all these "tough" driving laws that are lightly/or not at all enforced.Way too much cerebral rectosis on the nations highways,new laws aren't needed,MORON reduction is.No one is held accountable for their actions anymore,that is a major player in the root sum of our nations problems INCLUDING but not limited to;DRIVING.As Gonzo says,nothing short of an Abrhams or APC will offer adequate protection against a hi-speed rear end assault.So lets attack the problem at it's root,ignorance/violence on the highway.Reward good safe driving habits with reduced insurance premiums and stuff it to the dummies with rates reflecting driving skill level.The more accidents/citations the higher insurance rates.T.C.

  22. #47
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    Post November 28th

    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A week after lawyers won the right to
    bring any Louisiana police department which owns a Crown Victoria
    Police Interceptor into a lawsuit claiming the model is
    unacceptably dangerous, State Police are considering whether to
    drop the suit.
    The Louisiana State Police fleet needs to replace 400 aging
    Interceptors, and Ford Motor Co. won't sell to agencies that are
    suing it.
    While the class-action status won last week greatly increases
    the scope of the case - and therefore the chance of a huge verdict
    or settlement - it could also block just about every law
    enforcement agency and municipality in Louisiana from buying the
    cars.
    Ford is trying to decide how to apply its no-sale rule in this
    greatly expanded case, attorney Mike Pulaski said. It may mean that
    Ford will stop selling the cars to any agency that doesn't opt out.
    Some State Police officials didn't want the attorney general to
    pursue the case in the first case. If the department drops out, it
    would be a major setback to the private lawyers representing the
    department.
    The lawsuit is among class actions in about a dozen states
    claiming that the model is prone to fatal fires in rear-end
    collisions, and citing deaths of 15 officers nationwide. Ford
    contends the deaths reflect officers' risky work rather than a
    design flaw, and has won the only case to go to trial so far.
    In spite of the lawsuits, about 80 percent of the specially
    packaged police cars sold nationwide are "Crown Vic"
    Interceptors. Chevrolet had the only major competitors: the Impala,
    still available, and the Caprice, which General Motors stopped
    making as a police model in 1996.
    Police officers like the Interceptor's big interior and trunk,
    which mean more room for prisoners and equipment, and its powerful
    engine and rear-wheel drive, which many drivers believe offers
    superior handling in emergencies.
    Somewhere between 250,000 and 450,000 Interceptors are on the
    nation's roads. Not even Ford knows the exact total. Lawyers in
    this case say there probably are 10,000 to 15,000 Interceptors in
    Louisiana.
    The suits contend that the layout of the Interceptor's gas tank
    and fuel system leads to leaks and explosions in rear-end
    collisions. Police cars are vulnerable to such crashes because they
    must park beside highways to help motorists and write tickets.
    At one point, 38 Louisiana police departments and sheriff's
    offices were suing Ford. Most, including the Orleans and Jefferson
    parish sheriff's offices, dropped the suits. Those agencies may be
    excluded from the state's class-action lawsuit, but the judge
    hasn't ruled.
    Ford has said the 10 current suits in Louisiana are more than in
    any other state. Besides State Police, St. Charles, St. John the
    Baptist, Lafourche, Terrebonne, Avoyelles and Iberville parishes,
    and the cities of Houma and Ball have suits in state court.
    Shreveport is suing in federal court.
    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigated
    the Interceptor two years ago. It and the Florida Highway Patrol,
    in a separate study, found that the car meets safety standards and
    is no more at risk of fiery deaths than the Caprice.
    Lawyers for the state say they know of only one rear-end
    collision in which an Interceptor burst into flames because of a
    fuel leak. That one is not part of any current suit: the family of
    Trooper Hung Le, who died from burns after the 1998 crash, settled
    out of court.
    The lawsuits allege that Ford should pay because the cars are
    not as safe as the buyers thought they were.
    "We feel we paid too much money when we bought the car because
    we didn't know about the defect," said Ben Beychok, one of the
    attorneys who filed the suit. "The defect was never disclosed,
    even though Ford knew about it years ago."
    Ford says the car has no defect. It has offered plastic shields
    for the gas tank.
    Former state Attorney General Richard Ieyoub filed Louisiana's
    lawsuit last year for State Police. It has continued under Charles
    Foti, who is in the odd position of supporting a suit as attorney
    general that he dropped as Orleans Parish criminal sheriff.
    The state is not paying anything but is allowing Beychok, Tony
    Clayton and Alan Usry to lead the case on behalf of the state.
    Trial lawyers typically get nothing if they lose but one-quarter to
    one-third of any awards or settlements they win.
    They asked to bring the state's case and local lawsuits against
    Ford under one umbrella. State District Judge Wilson Fields in
    Baton Rouge ruled Monday that the state is entitled to represent,
    as a class, all political subdivisions that have bought
    Interceptors since 1992.
    Pulaski said Ford will appeal, a process that could take up to a
    year.
    Col. Henry Whitehorn, who oversees State Police, is consulting
    with department attorneys and has not decided whether to stay in
    the suit, Lt. Lawrence McLeary said.
    Before the suit was filed last year, the captain in charge of
    the troopers' fleet said he was confident in the Interceptor and
    had advised state attorneys not to sue, according to a deposition.
    Former head of State Police Col. Terry Landry also shared that view
    when he was in charge last year, McLeary said.
    Trial attorney Clayton said troopers are not qualified to judge.
    "The troopers are not experts, and they don't know anything about
    the designs," he said.
    ---
    Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://
    WWW.TIMESPICAYUNE.COM

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  23. #48
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    Can't buy CV's? Problem solved.



    http://www.njlawman.com/Feature%20Pi...e%20magnum.htm

    While I am not pleased that CV's are prone to fire when rear-ended, I think we all agree that these cars are exposed to practically immeasurable hazards. Cops have more than their share to deal with in the first place... people just need to slow the hell down.

  24. #49
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    Default CA...

    The thing I have to keep coming back to on this issue is
    the California Highway Patrol. (CHP) The CHP is the largest
    purchaser of Crown Vics in the nation and the largest law
    enforcement agency as well. Thus, the CHP has the most
    rear-end collisions and accidents in these vehicles. (weekly)

    BUT...None of them explode and there are no lawsuits thats
    I know of.

    WHY? The CHP modifies the gas tanks on new Crown Vics at
    their Sacramento facility.

    Hmmmmm...Does it really take a rocket scienctist to figure
    this one out? Just call the CHP and ask them what they do.
    I am sure they will share this information.

    Isnt a Police Officer's or Trooper's life worth a phone
    call or fax?
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 11-29-2004 at 12:28 AM.

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    THere was another article in another Police magazine talking about the Magnums for Law enforcement and it compared the Magnum and the Crown Vic. I don't rememver a whole lot from the article, but I believe the Magnum has a longer wheelbase, but is shorter in overall length. I know they mentioned something about the acceleration vs. top speed, but I can't remember what exactly was said.......

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