Volvo Trucks North America is recalling certain model year 2016-2017 VNL, VNX and VNM trucks and Mack Trucks, Inc. some model year 2016-2017 Titan heavy haul trucks due to a possible defect in the steering shafts.
Volvo trucks being recalled were manufactured from May 11, 2015, through March 8, 2016. These trucks "may have been manufactured without a roll pin on the steering shafts," the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced. "If the roll pin is missing, the lower steering shaft may disconnect from the junction block. Also, the bolt connecting the upper steering shaft to the lower steering shaft may not have been properly tightened.
"Either condition can lead to separation of the steering shaft," the agency continued in an email sent Thursday afternoon, March 17.
More specifically, the recall announcement by the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that some 19 steering shafts provided to Volvo may not have had the roll pin installed. That could cause the steering shaft to disconnect from the junction block.
Additionally, "the bolt connecting the upper steering shaft to the lower steering shaft may not properly secure the upper steering shaft," NHTSA states. Should the steering shaft separate, it would cause "complete loss of steering which may result in a vehicle crash," but Volvo has received no reports of personal injury "and considers this [recall] as a proactive measure."
UPDATE: Meanwhile, Mack Trucks, Inc. issued a notice on March 11 informing distributors of a recall affecting 51 Titan trucks built from May 11, 2015 through Feb. 12, 2016. In the notice, Mack says it "recently became aware of the risk of failure with a greaseable two-piece steering shaft" provided by a supplier and is contacting owners of affected vehicles "and directing them to take the vehicles out of service as soon as possible."
Mack stresses that there have been no reports of incidents with the trucks but nonetheless is urging that the 51 trucks be taken out of service "to be overly cautious." The company notes that its intention is to replace the two-piece steering shafts with a one-piece steering shaft, and is also "exploring every option" to limit any customer downtime due to the replacement.
Mack has set up a customer support line at 877-800-4945 (opt #1) to answer customer questions on the matter and is asking distributors to contact any local customers whose vehicles have the potentially faulty component to inform them of the issue.