Ford urged to recall Explorers amid carbon monoxide concerns

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ATLANTA (CBS) The Center for Auto Safety said it wants the Ford Motor Company to recall all its 2011-2017 Ford Explorers. That's more than 1.3 million SUVs.

The vehicles have been at the center of controversy for months and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating more than 2,700 complaints about possible carbon monoxide seeping into the cabin of Explorers. That includes reports of 41 injuries and three accidents that may also be linked.

In July, police in Austin, Texas, parked 400 Explorers after nearly two dozen officers were found to have carbon monoxide in their blood.

Across the country, Ford has been repairing the Explorer police cruisers at no cost. But the company says the issue in the police model is separate from the complaints in civilian models. Ford blames the problems with police cruisers on modifications of the vehicles after they were purchased, like installing emergency lights.

Responding to the call for a recall, Ford said the company is "confident in our current methods for quickly identifying and addressing potential vehicle issues."

So instead, Ford says it will send letters next month to owners of 2011-2017 Explorers, urging them to take their SUVs to dealers for inspections, so any necessary repairs can be made.