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Ford recalls 550,000 Escape, Fusion vehicles over rollaway concerns

Unintended vehicle movement is not usually a desired outcome.

Make sure to set your parking brake, lest the vehicle... Escape your control.

Sometimes issues that spur recalls aren't limited to a single problem in a single factory. That's the case with Ford's latest large recall.

Ford has issued a recall covering approximately 550,000 examples of the 2013-2016 Ford Fusion sedan and the 2013-2014 Ford Escape SUV. The vehicles were built in three separate facilities -- Flat Rock and Louisville in the US, and Hermosillo in Mexico -- and carry build dates between June 18, 2013 and Aug. 31, 2015. Approximately 504,000 of these cars are in the US, with the rest split between Canada and Mexico.

The problem stems from the transmission -- or, rather, a part connected to it. A bushing responsible for holding the shifter cable in the transmission might detach. If that happens, the transmission might be in a different gear than what the driver may think it's in. For example, you might put the car in Park, and the dashboard would show Park, but the car would still be in gear.

Obviously, that presents a major safety issue, as unintended vehicle movement can cause harm to the car, a structure it's parked in or the driver and occupants. Thankfully, Ford has received no notifications of accidents or injuries related to this problem.

Remedying the issue is straightforward. When the car is dropped off at a dealership, technicians will replace the shifter cable bushing in question. In the interim, Ford suggests that owners of affected vehicles use the parking brake every time the car is placed in Park. That way, even if it's still in gear, the parking brake will keep it from moving unintentionally.