Carbon monoxide poisoning in police cars

Debbie Snapp
ECB Publishing, Inc

Ford engineers are working diligently to correct air quality concerns in Ford Explorer and Interceptor SUVs that tested positive for carbon monoxide after law enforcement officers have voiced their concerns.
Police Officers in several states have succumbed to Carbon Monoxide leakage in the vehicles they were driving in recent months. Some have lost consciousness in crashes involving department-issued vehicles, others have tested positive for carbon monoxide poisoning and have been treated and released from local hospitals.
Monticello Police Chief Fred Mosley says of his Department vehicles “We only have one Explorer, and it’s an older model (2001). It's not affected by the recent issues of carbon monoxide leaking. We do take heed to these warnings and issues when they come about because we don't want our officers exposed to anything that might harm them. This recall does not apply to any of the vehicles in our fleet.”
First Sergeant Don Barfield, Patrol Supervisor with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, says that there are six Explorers in their fleet. He goes on to say, “I contacted the Tallahassee Police Department Fleet Services recently and spoke with Jack Miller. Jack told me TPD had purchased battery co2 detectors and installed them in their Explorers. I ordered six co2 detectors for our Explorers. I just received them today, and we will be installing them shortly. I was able to purchase the six detectors for about $100. We have not had any problems with our Explorers, but since it could take some time before the Explorers are recalled, we decided to purchase the detectors to protect our deputies and the public, considering what could happen if we had a co2 leak.”
Many police departments, fire departments, and public works departments have pulled these particular vehicles from service until changes can be done. Several departments have detected potentially dangerous levels of the odorless gas inside their vehicles and are in the process of adding detectors into all their vehicles because of the carbon monoxide issues in the Ford Explorer vehicles.
This isn't a one-day process. The departments want to make sure the corrections are done right before they allow their employees to drive the vehicles again.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently expanded its safety defect investigation based on a total of 791 complaints on this issue. The investigation is specifically on exhaust odors and concerns of exposure to carbon monoxide in model year 2011 to 2017 Ford Explorer SUVs.