• Since when did NBC let a little thing like facts get in the way of the agenda that they want to push.
    I still remember a little issue concerning Ford truck gas tanks and model rocket motors.

    • 1. If you are talking about the side-saddle gas tanks, it was GM, not ford.

      2. And while NBC cheated to recreate the issue in controlled circumstances, there were documented issues with the tanks rupturing during accidents and occasionally leading to fires.


  • Matt S. is correct that the gas tank controversy that got NBC in so much trouble in 1993 was GM, not Ford. However, he is not correct to imply that there was some sort of documented safety deficiency with the trucks, and the trial-lawyer-allied Center for Auto Safety, which took a lead role at the time in misleading the public on this point, is in no way a reliable source to cite on this. I wrote extensively on the GM controversy at the time, and the first link below conveys some of the problems with the narrative that trial lawyers (via go-between experts) were trying to sell to the public via NBC about the trucks’ overall safety record:


    As I noted in the last link, NBC in some ways was the least deeply involved of the three legacy networks in deeply misleading crash-“test” coverage, and it got burned in almost its first time trying it. Both ABC and CBS got away with many more instances, and unlike NBC, they never apologized and made a gesture toward cleaning house. That’s another reason to be careful about implying that one famous scandal 25 years ago, plus a shortcoming in a piece on an entirely different topic published just now, add up to some pattern.

    • When I said documented issues with the side saddle tanks, I was referring to actual real world accidents, not crash test data. Controlled crash tests will never be able to fully replicate everything that can happen in real accidents.

      From your first link:
      “In fact it takes about 4,000 side-impact crashes in a GM pickup to get one fire with a major injury or fatality, which means the supposed “rolling fire-bombs” may compare favorably with haystacks or mounds of feathers as objects to crash into.”

      Even if true, it says nothing one way or the other about how “safe” the side saddle gas tanks were without comparison to the accident fire rates for the under the bed between the frame rail placement being used at the time by Ford and Chrysler.

  • Ok. I screwed up thinking that it was Ford. It was a long time ago.

    Didn’t it turn out that a law firm paid NBC to produce and air that story? I’ve been hearing more and more about things like that happening, now that you have investors funding lawsuits.