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Mercedes-Benz recalls 300,000 U.S. vehicles due to fire hazard

By
Daniel Uria
Mercedes-Benz recalled 308,000 vehicles due to a potential fire hazard caused by issues with the engine starter. The issue has resulted in 35 fires in the U.S., but no injuries or deaths have been reproted.
 Photo by Brian Kersey/UPI
Mercedes-Benz recalled 308,000 vehicles due to a potential fire hazard caused by issues with the engine starter. The issue has resulted in 35 fires in the U.S., but no injuries or deaths have been reproted. Photo by Brian Kersey/UPI | License Photo

March 4 (UPI) -- More than 300,000 Mercedes-Benz vehicles in the United States have been recalled due to a possible fire hazard.

The recall includes about 308,000 C- and E-Class vehicles, as well as CLA, GLA and GLC vehicles and has been linked to 35 car fires in the United States, according to the company.

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"This situation typically occurs in the rare situation where a vehicle is stranded in a significant amount of standing water and the engine stalls and cannot be restarted on the first try," a Mercedes representative told CNN.

Other areas are subject to the recall but most of the affected vehicles are in the United States and were built between February 2014 and February 2017.

The issue occurs if the vehicle's engine starter is blocked due to engine or transmission damage.

Attempts to start the engine after the blockage can possibly send a very high current through the starter's current limiter, company officials said. Repeated attempts might overheat the limiter and melt surrounding components, resulting in a fire, officials said.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been notified about the issue.

The company said it was unaware of any injuries or deaths resulting from the problem and it expects to alert U.S. customers about the problem over the next 60 days.

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Mercedes owners are encouraged to bring the vehicle to the dealer where the issue can be fixed within an hour by installing an additional fuse in the electrical line leading to the starter.

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