Automotive

Published on October 15th, 2017 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez

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Exploding Car Sunroofs…What’s Next? Exploding Seats?

A recent study on this subject revealed some startling information. Some glass sun/moon-roofs can explode without warning. Before you start thinking of selling your car with a glass-roof and start panicking, please note that the number of cases are small at this time. There have been at least 859 reported cases of mysteriously shattered sunroofs in the last 22 years.

The American, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data showed a steady increase in reports of shattering sunroofs, starting in 1995 with just a handful but spiking in 2014 with 187 reported cases that year alone. The issue has been reported in a wide range of vehicles from most automakers. Most automakers point the finger at rocks or other road debris causing damage which can lead to shattering.

Engineers say it could be a litany of issues in the manufacturing process that can weaken the glass, making it more vulnerable to the torsional forces that can flex a vehicle’s roof under normal circumstances. Lastly, the NHTSA says safety guidelines for sunroofs have not kept up with the development and implementation of larger panoramic roofs.

For now, there is no recall mentioned….but like the Takata issues and the accelerator pedal issues, we would not want to wait for a series of deaths before action is taken.


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