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Ford Motor Company, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Ford Transit Connect

Ford Motor Company, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Jeffrey M. Giuseppe
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
March 2, 2015


[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 40 (Monday, March 2, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 11259-11260]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-04151]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2014-0054; Notice 2]


Ford Motor Company, Grant of Petition for Decision of 
Inconsequential Noncompliance

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Grant of petition.

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SUMMARY: Ford Motor Company (Ford) has determined that certain model 
year (MY) 2010-2014 Transit Connect vehicles do not fully comply with 
paragraph S5.1 of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 
205, Glazing Materials. Ford has filed an appropriate report dated 
March 31, 2014, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance 
Responsibility and Reports.

ADDRESSES: For further information on this decision contact Luis 
Figueroa, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration (NHTSA), telephone (202) 366-5287, facsimile 
(202) 366-5930.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 
    I. Ford's Petition: Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and 
the rule implementing those provisions at 49 CFR part 556, Ford 
submitted a petition for an exemption from the

[[Page 11260]]

notification and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the 
basis that this noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle 
safety.
    Notice of receipt of Ford's petition was published, with a 30-Day 
public comment period, on June 19, 2014 in the Federal Register (79 FR 
35224). No comments were received. To view the petition and all 
supporting documents log onto the Federal Docket Management System 
(FDMS) Web site at: http://www.regulations.gov/. Then follow the online 
search instructions to locate docket number ``NHTSA-2014-0054.''
    II. Vehicles Involved: Affected are approximately 174,453 Transit 
Connect vehicles built from March 20, 2009 through September 2, 2013 at 
the plant in Kocaeli, Turkey as well those built from August 1, 2013 
through February 28, 2014 at the plant in Valencia, Spain.
    III. Noncompliance: Ford explains that the noncompliance is that 
subject vehicles do not fully meet the requirements of paragraph S5.1 
of FMVSS No. 205 because the windshields installed in the vehicles do 
not include the ``A[darr]S1'' upper boundary markings specified in 
Section 7 of ANSI/SAE Z 26.1-1996 Marking of Safety Glazing Materials 
which is incorporated by reference in FMVSS No. 205.
    IV. Rule Requirements: FMVSS No. 205 incorporates ANSI Z26.1-1996 
and other industry standards in paragraph S.5.1 by reference. Paragraph 
S6 of FMVSS No. 205 specifically requires manufacturers to mark the 
glazing material in accordance with Section 7 of ANSI Z26.1-1996 and to 
add other markings required by NHTSA. With respect to the subject 
noncompliance, Section 7 of ANSI Z26.1-1996 specifies that in addition 
to the item of glazing number and other required markings, the 
manufacturer shall include the ``A[darr]S1'' upper boundary which will 
identify the item of glazing, and the area that meets Test 2 of ANSI 
Z26.1 (1996). The direction of the arrow will point to the direction of 
the area that complies with Test 2 of ANSI Z26.1 (1996).
    V. Summary of Ford's Analyses: Ford stated its belief that the 
subject noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety for 
the following reasons:
    (A) The windshield glazing of the affected vehicles otherwise meets 
all marking and performance requirements of FMVSS No. 205 and ANSI 
Z26.1-1996. Because all transparent sections of the affected glazing 
fully meet all of the applicable performance requirements, Ford does 
not believe the absence of the ``A[darr]S1'' upper boundary markings 
impact the ability of the glazing to satisfy the stated purpose or 
affect the performance of the glazing intended by FMVSS No. 205.
    (B) No other related FMVSSs are affected. The vision zones used for 
all other related FMVSSs are all in clear areas of the glazing and the 
vehicles are fully compliant to FMVSS No. 103 Windshield Defrosting and 
Defogging Systems and FMVSS No. 104 Windshield Wiping and Washing 
Systems.
    (C) The windshields are appropriately marked with the AS1 marking 
adjacent to the Manufacturer's Trademark, as required by ANSI/SAE 
Z26.1-1996.
    (D) Ford made reference to a previous petition for inconsequential 
noncompliance that addressed labeling issues that NHTSA granted.
    Ford also stated that it is not aware of any field or owner 
complaints, accidents, or injuries attributed to this condition.
    Ford has additionally informed NHTSA that it has corrected the 
noncompliance so that all future production vehicles will comply with 
FMVSS No. 205.
    In summation, Ford believes that the described noncompliance of the 
subject vehicles is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety, and that 
its petition, to exempt Ford from providing recall notification of 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118 and remedying the recall 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120 should be granted.

NHTSA Decision

    NHTSA Analysis: FMVSS No. 205 specifies labeling and performance 
requirements for automotive glazing. FMVSS No. 205 incorporates ANSI 
Z26.1 (1996) and other industry standards by reference (S.5.1). 
Paragraph S6 of FMVSS No. 205 requires manufacturers to mark glazing 
material in accordance with Section 7 of ANSI Z26.1 (1996) and to add 
other specific markings required by NHTSA. Section 7 of ANSI Z26.1 
(1996) specifies that in addition to other required markings, glazing 
which in a single sheet of material are intentionally made with an area 
having a luminous transmittance of not less than 70% (Test 2--Luminous 
Transmittance) adjoining an area that has less than 70% luminous 
transmittance, shall be permanently marked at the edge of the area that 
complies with Test 2 with the item of glazing number and an arrow 
pointing in the direction of the area that is intended to comply with 
Test 2, e.g., ``AS[darr]1''.
    According to the petition, Ford manufactured the affected MY 2010-
2014 Transit Connect vehicles with windshields that lack the arrow 
marking designating the area intended to comply with Test 2. NHTSA 
believes that the missing arrow is inconsequential to vehicle safety 
since Ford has certified that the glazing complies with all other 
labeling and performance requirements of FMVSS No. 205, including the 
item of glazing number. Ford has also informed NHTSA that all future 
Transit Connect vehicles will fully comply with FMVEE No. 205.
    NHTSA believes that the absence of the ``A[darr]S1'' upper boundary 
markings, poses little if any risk to motor vehicle safety because in 
this particular instance the area having a luminous transmittance of 
less than 70% is readily apparent without the upper boundary markings.
    NHTSA Decision: In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA has 
decided that Ford has met its burden of persuasion that the FMVSS No. 
205 noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. 
Accordingly, Ford's petition is hereby granted and Ford is exempted 
from the obligation of providing notification of, and a remedy for, 
that noncompliance under 49 U.S.C. 30118 and 30120.
    NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a 
determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers 
only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, 
to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance 
and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, any decision on 
this petition only applies to the subject vehicles that Ford no longer 
controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. 
However, the granting of this petition does not relieve Ford 
distributors and dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, offer for 
sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate 
commerce of the noncompliant vehicles under their control after Ford 
notified them that the subject noncompliance existed.

    Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: delegations of authority at 
49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8)

Jeffrey M. Giuseppe,
Acting Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2015-04151 Filed 2-27-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

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