Is your truck one of them?
According to Reuters, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has opened a preliminary investigation into approximately 54,000 model year 2017 Ford F-250 and F-350 Super Duty pickup trucks regarding their tailgates. More specifically, it's possible those tailgates could open while the truck is in motion because the latch mechanism could be defective. If the investigation proves necessary, a full-blown recall will be issued. This issue first came to light last October when Ford issued a technical service bulletin addressing the same issue. At the time, it was found that water could be the source of the problem because it could intrude in the wire harness.
The NHTSA is now conducting its own testing to see if it can determine the cause. Without question this could be a potentially serious and dangerous defect that would need to correct immediately. Say if you were hauling around stuff in the truck's bed and because the tailgate suddenly opened those objects could fly out and into traffic and vehicles driving behind you. The Ford trucks themselves could also be seriously damaged as a result. In any case, this is only a preliminary investigation for now, but both Ford and the government agency have received complaints from owners about this problem.
We can't imagine a fix, should one be necessary, to be extremely complicated. An additional tailgate lock could potentially solve things. At worst, a new tailgate could be required. But again, this is all just speculation for now. The F-Series is one of Ford's most important vehicles in its entire lineup. Heck, it's killing off traditional cars like the Focus and Fusion in favor of a greater focus on trucks and SUVs. Although all recalls and potential recalls must be taken seriously, this is one Ford cannot have any mistakes with. We'll keep you posted once we have any updates.