At the epicenter of the scandal was the family car – seven-seater compact MPV Vauxhall Zafira second generation (2005-2014), known in Europe as the Opel Zafira B.
The Agency DVSA (Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency), part of the UK Department for transport initiated a criminal investigation against the company Vauxhall, which is accused of “reckless disregard of security requirements.” Began the collection of evidence, and Vauxhall is actively cooperating with the authorities. The prosecution says that the brand is slow at reacting to customer complaints, did not understand the reasons, and later announced a review of the products and did not control the quality of work.
The result was more than 160 incidents involving the ignition of the compact MPV Zafira, some of them burned to the ground, and Vauxhall in the amount will have to withdraw more than 280 thousand Zafir. Looks like the trial will have serious consequences for British industry as a whole, because in the revision need of the whole system of car reviews, the relationship between regulators and manufacturers, at the same time may tighten the requirements for dealers and car owners, reports the publication Auto Express.
The first fire was registered in 2009. After it happened for at least another 161 incident. Only the London fire brigade said that from 2013 put out 71 Zafiro, not counting arson. Fortunately, the wounded and the dead in this story is, although the machines were often people and animals.
The cause of fires firm Vauxhall calls unscrupulous repair and the Agency DVSA agrees with this conclusion. The resistor that is part of a system of heating and ventilation, there is a fuse, designed to protect from overheating. When the fuse performs its function, that is burned, the car owners, of course, was drawn to the service station. The local master “solved the problem” so that the fuse has not worked well ever.
The photo on the left shows the factory version. On the right you can see that for compounds used clip-“crocodile”. And options such makeshift “repair” a few: was soldered a copper wire, the terminals are screwed to each other and so on.
Initially Vauxhall just fobbed calling the fire isolated cases, and blaming the “independent garages”. The blacklist was brought to the fact that in 2015 two worried moms whose Zafira suddenly lit up with children and Pets on Board, created a Facebook group and quickly gathered more than 3000 participants. Some of them were also victims of the burnt Zafir. Then about the issue told the BBC in the programme Watchdog, Vauxhall and then woke up abruptly.
The manufacturer finally realized that it is necessary to exclude the possibility of incorrect repair, and in 2015 announced revocable campaign for “inspection and rework”. It was decided to replace the fuse and the resistor and fan motor, and grilles air vents to prevent leak moisture. The second stage of the review was for 2016. The entire campaign covered 234 938 Zafir, but about 55 000 of them still have not passed the procedure, although Vauxhall will send the owners up to seven letters.
It is estimated that the recall will cost General Motors at least 40 million pounds. No compensation to the owners of the burnt cars is not provided, but they payouts and do not require. Most importantly, in their view, is to exclude such incidents in the future.
However, the company miscalculated by including a revocable only list cars, while climate control is no less risk. Therefore, since the end of October launched another recall, affecting 47 000 Zafir. Meanwhile, the recalled vans pop up on the secondary, with the official vendors. Not only are they not repairing used seaters, but do not warn about the threats to their future owners. This, too, told the BBC, pouring oil on the fire.
All parties involved in the conflict, agreed that “lessons need to be learned”. Vauxhall apologizes conducts an internal investigation, called on the government to create a national database on fires in cars and repeats the mantra:
“The safety of our customers is priority number one.”
Regulators recognize that in vain have relied on manufacturers in the security and promise to tighten the screws. The owners threatened tough measures for failing to provide machines for the opinion: they will not be able to pass inspection and to pay the transport tax, and therefore will lose the right to drive.