The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched an investigation into 1993–2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees over concerns that their rear-mounted gas tank may be prone to rupture in the event of an accident. The agency has recorded 44 instances where a ruptured fuel tank may have contributed to a total of 55 deaths resulting from fire.

The Center for Auto Safety, a consumer advocacy group founded by Ralph Nader, requested the NHTSA investigation. In response to the Washington-based group's petition, NHTSA issued the following in a statement: "The existence of these post-crash fires does not, by itself, establish a defect. Further review and investigation into these incidents is needed." And so an investigation we shall have.

A preliminary report from NHTSA suggested that there wasn't any evidence that the 1993-2004 Grand Cherokee's fuel tanks were "over-represented for post-crash fires." If this investigation leads to a recall, Chrysler has indicated that it will cooperate with the agency.

[Source: Business Week]

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