Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

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Search results for "Ford Motor Company" ...

  • High Flying Perks

    As automakers took more financial hits in 2006 that led to layoffs and cost-cutting, company executives asserted that they too would cut down on their personal budgets. But WXYZ-TV found out that the executives did nothing to reduce their use of corporate jets and fuel in trips costing in the tens of thousands of dollars. The eight-month investigation uncovered situations like that of Ford CEO BIll Ford, Jr. He accepted a yearly salary of only a dollar, and used company planes for personal trips to the tune of $297,201 in a single year. Ford president Mark Fields is tasked with cutting costs in the company, yet used the planes on many weekends to take trips from Detroit to his mansion in Florida at a cost of between $50,000 and $70,000 each weekend.
  • Blowout. How the tire problem turned into a crisis for Firestone and Ford. Lack of a database masked the pattern that led to yesterday's big recall. The heat and the pressure.

    According to the article, "Yesterday, ine the face of a federal investigation into 46 deaths and more than 300 incidents involving Firestone tires that allegedly shredded on the highway, Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. said it would recall more than 6.5 million tires, the majority of them mounted as original equipment on Ford Motor Co. Explorers and other Ford light trucks. The Firestone brands affected are certain 15-inch Radial ATX and Radial ATX II tires produced in North America and certain Wilderness AT tires with product code P235/75R15 that were manufactured at Firestone's Decatur, Ill. plant."
  • Giving workers the treatment: If you raise a stink, you get the shrink!

    Downs reports about "an increasingly popular weapon against whistleblowers: the psychiatric reprisal ... Across the country, companies have seized upon concerns about workplace violence to quash dissent. Hundreds of large corporations have hired psychiatrists and psychologists to advise them on how to weed out 'threatening' employees ... But by drawing the definition of 'threatening' as broadly as possible, they are giving themselves a new club to bang over workers." For example: Ford Motor Company electrician was barred from the factory and sent to a psychiatrist after he complained that he could not do his job because many of his bosses were taking equipment out of the plant to work on their homes or personal businesses.
  • The Widower's Tale

    The New Yorker investigates the death of Tracy Thomas, a six months pregnant woman, in a car crash in New Jersey in 1997. The report depicts her and her husband as belonging to "the first generation of middle-class African-American people...." The story reveals that one month before she died, her husband "had increased the death benefit of her life-insurance policy." The reporter uncovers a belated doctors' conclusion: "Mrs. Thomas died of compression of the neck by the hands of another." The investigation describes how the widower has tried to prove that his wife's death is related to air-bag injuries, and reports on his lawsuit against the Ford Motor Company..
  • Windstar Troubles

    WBNS-TV reports on "problems with 1995 Ford Windstar transmissions ... [that] were expensive to fix and pose a safety risk." The investigation reveals that "one of the primary problems concerned aluminum forward clutch pistons, ... [which] can fail in transmissions on 1994 and 1995 Windstars, Taurus, Mercury Sables and Lincoln Continentals." It also finds 521 owner complaints about the questionable part. The reporter uncovers a 1994 Ford Motor Company service bulletin warning dealers and technicians that "the aluminium part may crack, causing gear engagement concerns." The story details several lawsuits claiming that Ford has "told its dealers to replace the aluminium part with a steel part," but has "failed to notify its customers about the defect."
  • Not So Fast

    NBC News Dateline reports that "For more than a decade, automakers and federal safety officials have blamed reports of sudden acceleration on 'driver error' - people mistakenly pressing the accelerator instead of the brake. But an exhaustive 9-month investigation by Dateline NBC uncovered evidence -- including internal company memos -- suggesting another cause: electrical short circuits in some modern cars. It was a report that, in the end, had the man who once led the government's investigation wondering if his agency had fully explored sudden acceleration..."
  • Built to Last?

    Consumers told KARE-TV that the 1995 Ford Windstar is plagued by premature transmission failures. Local mechanics agreed they appeared to be failing at a much higher rate than would be expected from the first 5-star rated mini-van and often right after the factory warranty had expired. Owners were outraged to be paying an average of $2000 out-of-pocket expense to replace these transmissions before they were even done paying for their vans. The authors looked through NHTSA's database and found Ford had predicted these transmissions would fail in a technical service bulletin and had redesigned a key part midway through the fires model year.
  • Ford Motor Company

    The investigation revealed that The Ford Motor Co. withheld key documents from the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) concerning a serious defect that has resulted in several deaths and serious injuries around the country and could affect as many as 20 million Ford vehicles. NHTSA requested this specific information on this alleged defect in the mid-1980s and did not receive it.
  • Debt Reckoning

    ABC investigated the illegal business practices of Ford Motor Company -- one of the largest home-equity lenders in the country. Most years, Ford makes more money loaning to people with bad credit than it does selling cars. Through its subsidiary, called The Associates, Ford targets low-income people with equity in their homes, then, pays kickbacks to brokers for steering unwitting customers into the most expensive loans.
  • Ford Motor Company's production of the Pinto - a car the company knew was a firetrap

    Mother Jones runs classic expose of Ford Motor Company's production of the Pinto - a car the company knew was a firetrap.