The NYS OFPC Arson Bureau has received information regarding the potential for electrical fires in Ford Truck vehicles. The incident involved a 2008 Ford F-650 Crew cab truck. Fire was confined primarily to the dash area to the right of the steering column causing extensive damage within the cab. See photo.
In that area of an exemplar model, investigators identified air conditioning and ignition relays as well as the vehicle's emergency (4 way) flasher unit. As reported to the Bureau, the exemplar model drew approximately 19 amps through the 14 gauge wire and 5 amp flasher unit when tested under an additional load of lights and/or trailer connection, resulting in failure of the flasher unit.
Failures tend to be the result of the added load to the circuit. The agency involved (NYS DOT) is routinely changing these flasher units in Ford Truck models F-350, F-450, F-550, F-650, and F-750.
For questions regarding this bulletin or if your agency experiences similar instances please report them to the NYS OFPC Arson Bureau at 518.474.6746.
Information and photo courtesy of Walter Batt, Orleans County Fire Investigation Unit