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Hyundai, Kia recall more vehicles for fire hazard

| Jan 14, 2021 | Defective Products & Machinery |

If you own a Hyundai Tucson SUV from the model years 2016-2021 or a 2019 Kia Stinger sedan, you should immediately stop driving the vehicle and park it outside. This is because there is a defect that could cause a fire. A free repair will soon be available.

Hyundai and Kia, which are related companies who share parts and suppliers, have already issued several recalls for vehicles at risk for catching fire. There were already 2.5 million vehicles on recall.

According to a Hyundai spokesperson, the recall of the Tucson is not related to an earlier recall issued in September 2020. However, both recalls involve automatic braking systems that could catch fire. Fires but no injuries have been reported.

A Kia spokesperson told Consumer Reports that there have been at least six fires in Stinger sedans reported. None of them led to crashes or injuries.

You can’t risk putting this recall off

According to Hyundai, if you notice the ABS warning light illuminated on the dashboard, you should immediately stop driving the vehicle. Disconnect the vehicle’s battery — making sure to remove the negative battery cable first — while you wait for service. Contact your local Hyundai dealer right away. You may be eligible for a loaner vehicle.

The problem with the Tucson appears to be a defective circuit board within the ABS system. It could short-circuit and cause a fire. Hyundai will provide a free replacement of the faulty ABS module.

For the Stinger, Kia is still investigating the cause of the reported fires. It suspects the issue could be within the hydraulic electronic control unit. The company is currently working on a fix.

Owners of the affected vehicles will be notified beginning in late February. You can reach Hyundai at 800-633-5151 or Kia at 800-333-4542.

What to do if your vehicle catches fire

Consumer Reports consulted with car safety experts and recommends these steps if you are driving and your vehicle catches fire:

  • Immediately pull over and shut down the engine to stop the flow of fuel.
  • As quickly as possible, get all occupants out of the vehicle and stay 100 to 150 feet away or more. Do not go back to retrieve personal property.
  • Stand in a safe location, not on an active roadway. Stay far away from your vehicle in case another motorist hits it while you wait.
  • Call 911 or ask another motorist to call.
  • Do not open the hood or trunk if you suspect there is a fire inside. The additional air could enlarge the fire.
  • Unless you have a Class B/Class C fire extinguisher and clear access to the source, don’t try to put out the fire.