65,000 Mazdas Recalled Because of…Spiders?
In the annals of auto recall history I’m fairly sure this is a new one. Spiders.
Last week, Mazda Motor Corp. said it would recall 65,000 cars to fix a problem with spiders nesting in tiny rubber hoses linked to fuel tank systems that could cause pressurization and ventilation problems in certain cars.
Mazda was worried that the infestation by the yellow sac spider, or Cheiracanthium inclusum, could cause fuel leaks and even fires.
So these little guys have the potential to be real firebugs.
The recall was issued after no less than 20 dealerships around the U.S. reported infestations. 65,000 Mazda6 cars from 2009 and 2010 were recalled across the United States, Canada and Mexico. Omaha.com states the problem seems to occur only in the four-cylinder version.
Pest infestations in cars are not really that uncommon, but usually they occur after the vehicle is purchased. In this case, however, some believe the arachnids are getting into cars earlier in the process. Jerry Hirsch and Tiffany Hsu, reporters for the Los Angeles Times, take note:
Mazda’s spider problem could be the result of an infestation by the venomous arachnid at an auto parts supplier or the Flat Rock, Mich., plant where the automaker assembles its Mazda6 cars, rather than at the garages of owners, an entomologist said…
The article also notes that according to a spokesman from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the agency is not aware of any prior recalls being spurred by a pest infestation.
Fortunately as of this time there have been no reported car accidents, fires or spider bites as a results of the infestation.