494,000 Ram trucks recalled for fire hazard

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is recalling almost half a million medium- and heavy-duty Ram trucks over a water pump issue that could potentially cause a fire.

The company said it is not aware of any injuries or accidents related to the issue, which affects 2013-17 Ram 2500 and 3500 pickups and 3500, 4500 and 5500 chassis cabs. The recall is limited to trucks with 6.7-liter engines, the company said in a news release, noting that it no longer equips vehicles with that water pump.

"Customer feedback prompted an FCA US investigation that discovered certain trucks are equipped with a water-pump bearing that, after exposure to certain conditions, may overheat and potentially cause an engine-compartment fire," the release said. "Compromised water-pump function may activate a warning light in an affected vehicle’s instrument cluster. Customers are urged to consult their dealers whenever they observe warning lights."

The scope of any potential fire is apparently wide. A company spokesman said that "in accordance with (the) regulatory definition, which includes everything from a burning odor to open flame, we are aware of a small number of such incidents. Of these, a smaller number involved damage – none of which extended beyond the immediate area of the water pump."

The company said affected customers would be advised when service is available. The water pumps will be inspected and replaced if necessary.

The recall affects about 443,712 trucks in the United States, 46,220 in Canada and 4,485 outside North America.

Customer with questions can call the FCA U.S. Recall Information Center at (800) 853-1403.

Contact Eric D. Lawrence: elawrence@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter: @_ericdlawrence.

© Gannett Co., Inc. 2017. All Rights Reserved


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