No Customer Service from Dodge after recall of Durango - FIRE!

I bought a 2004 Durango in 2006, it caught fire and burned to the ground as a result of a factory defect, 384,000 where recalled. I’m out several thousand dollars for owning two weeks, I can’t get any satisfaction from Dodge - Does anyone have any suggestions? Here is what result of the defect - http://pic…urangoOnly

Nice bonfire!

Didn’t your insurance company cover the car?

I have a few questions-

Why are the hood and driver’s side front and rear doors open?

It looks like the fire originated inside the cabin. Why did you leave the doors open after the small fire started?

What is the factory defect you’re referring to?

How did you establish the fire was the result of the same issue for the recall?

What avenue did you use to contact the manufacturer?

What, exactly, was their response?

Why are you out thousands of dollars? Is that you overpaid for your Durango or is it simply depreciation?

Sorry about your woes, however if you wreck a Durango two weeks after new purchase this is similar. Bum luck, mabye they will offer a new durango at factory cost to you?

ALLDATA shows several possible defects that could cause a fire. One is battery cable related and since the fire obviously did not start under the hood the other defect (dashboard related) could have possibly been the cause.

However, I have a few questions also.
Why is this vehicle parked so far out from the house?
Why are all the doors open and why is the hood open when the fire obviously started inside the cabin?
If a fire breaks out inside the cabin then why in xxxx are you raising the hood?
Why all the picture taking? Looks like pics were being taken from the beginning of the fire?
Vehicle in operation at the time or just parked?
Lastly, what does the insurance company say about this; not only the vehicle, but the home?

I would like to know what recall he is talking about. I know the older Ram pickups had a recall on the headlight switch which was overheating and causing fires.


It could be any one those listed on top.

Assuming the cause of the fire was even related to one of those.
There’s been a lot of follow-up questions asked; hopefully there will be some answers.

Whatever happened to the idea of having the insurance company replace the vehicle with the SAME kind (make, model, year, options, mileage) as the damaged (“totalled”) vehicle? That would be TRUE recompense.

I have a few questions as well. In the photos you can tell that the vehicle was burning parked close to the garage(warped siding). Instead of moving the vehicle why didn’t you put out the fire. If the fire was small enough that you could enter the vehicle to move it why not put it out?
How was it determined the fire was a result of a Chrysler defect and not the result of some aftermarket installed component or wiring repair?
Chrysler makes recall information available to the general public. Going to,, and entering the vin # will instantly inform a consumer of open recalls. Do you have any verification that your vehicle was part of a recall?
Did you check to see if the recall had been done?
Even a carfax check will list open recalls was a carfax report done before purchase?
What is Chrysler saying?
Did you have insurance?
What is your insurance saying?
So many questions and noe answers.

erm. When the car’s on fire, you bail. You don’t take the time to nicely close and lock the doors

That and, when the fire department gets there to put the fire out, they tend to open the doors and hood so they can squirt foam on the fire :wink:

I can understand the siding melting a bit, since car fires (and all fires for that matter) get quite hot. However, it doesn’t look to me like any other part of the building was damaged, as would be expected from a fire that would melt siding at 10 yards.

Secondly, as others have pointed out, the fire appeared to have started in the cabin, so why was the hood up? Why so many pictures, especially from the beginning of the fire. If my car were on fire, the last thing I’d think of would be to grab the digital camera.

My spidey senses are tingling; I’m wondering if this guy did what many Chrysler owners dream of doing… and if I’m right, then I sincerely hope the OP gets nothing from Dodge or his insurance, because it will just make everyone else’s insurance rates go up…


Stop beating up on the OP guys. This isn’t a test for a CSI job. The poor guy’s new car caught fire of its own accord, and quite frankly I saw a new clip on TV of the same things happening to a lady’s new Dodge. There clearly was a problem, and it could have killed someone.

My recommendation to the OP is to contact a lawyer. I think you have some compensation coming. With the info you have, I think a settlement is likely.

sincere best.

There are two doors open and a small fire in the first photo. The hood is open too. Nobody’s expecting you to LOCK the doors but closing them would significantly slow down the combustion process- perhaps saving the vehicle versus a complete loss. It’s not like it’s going to explode due to an interior fire. Watching too many movies…

Thank you. People on this board seem willing to dive pretty deeply in to wild theory and supposition when all that is being asked is, Does anyone have suggestions on how to deal with Dodge? There is another thread around here where a guy asks about tire/wheel sizes and ends up with an earful of financial advice for his son.

the same mountainbike is dead on the money. Get a lawyer, probably one that specializes in cases such as this. Don’t trust legal advice from a forum on the internet, because on the internet, everyone is a lawyer.

Mountainbike & Mr.Josh:
No one on this board is attacking the OP. In order for us to best explain a course of action we need information. The questions that were asked are valid questions that will be asked by Dodge, the insurance co or an attorney. The OP will not get far with out answers. Although I am not an attorney I have gone through a similar situation when my dad’s F-150 burned to the ground do to a recalled cruise switch. Ford drug there feet for months before my dad’s insurance and his attorney got involved. They asked questions that no one could know the answers to.

To any that are interested I have attached the recall that I believe the OP is talking about. The recall started 4/1/07 with notification letters mailed out to owners of record and dealers were told to check inventory of new and used vehicles.
It involves a problem with the instrument cluster.

OP: If you are still watching this thread I would recommend you have answers for these questions before going any farther. If it can be proven the faulty instrument cluster caused the fire you should be paid fair market value for the vehicle and have your home repaired. I would also contact an attorney and the NHTSA the address and phone number are in the recall I posted.

Hope this helps.

No one is dumping on the OP. The OP is wanting suggestions from all of us as to what to do with Dodge, Inc. and there’s a lot of unanswered questions on this one.

The pics were obviously taken right after the fire started, so WHY IN THE WORLD is the hood up. Neither the fire dept. or the police have even showed up.
Is a huge photo-op the first priority when a fire breaks out? Not in my opinion. It’s call 911 and drag out the water hose.
A camera or cell phone picture-fest is down the list.

As to the warped siding on the house. I’ve seen a couple of things like this. A burning vehicle does not have to be close to a house to ruin the siding. You would be surprised at how much heat is emitted from something like this.
I saw some melted siding on a house and this was done by a vehicle that was burning near a 100 feet away.

OP, I’m still curious about what the fire investigators and insurance company has to say.
What reasons did they give for this and is insurance on the hook here?

“My spidey senses are tingling; I’m wondering if this guy did what many Chrysler owners dream of doing… and if I’m right, then I sincerely hope the OP gets nothing from Dodge or his insurance”

I’m sorry, but that sounds like an accusation to me.

What might help immensely would be clearing up a few questions that a number of people, including myself, have asked.

No one should give the OP blind advice “go after Dodge” without having those questions answered.
A scenario hit me in the first 20 seconds but I’m keeping it to myself at this point.

Just bumping this back up in another attempt to see if the OP wants to answer a few questions. :wink:

Folks, the questions asked sounded accusatory to me.

Lawyers specializing in this type of suit have access to forensic investigators, recall information, exisiting case law, pending suits, and other sources to construct a case that we don’t have. They know the specific applicable tort laws as well as the proper questions to ask. They’re experts.

They can and will also advise the client as to whether as case really exists or not.

The best advice we can give is to consult a lawyer. This is out of our areas of expertise.

It still sounds to me in rereading the posts like peoepl were beating upon the OP. I stand by my post.