Local police departments installing carbon monoxide detectors in popular patrol SUVs

Posted at 4:23 PM, Jul 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-14 07:20:29-04

TULSA -- Police and sheriff departments across the country using the popular Ford Police Explorer are taking measures to keep their officers safe from carbon monoxide.

In just the last six months, several departments in the Tulsa area started installing detectors in the popular police SUV.

In Austin, six officers driving the police SUVs reported getting sick from the fumes.

In Tulsa, the sheriff’s office is modernizing its fleet to protect officers.

"I'm happy to report so far we haven't had any indication that this seems to be an issue with the vehicles that we bought from Ford, but we're definitely going to watch it and see what happens,” said Casey Roebuck, with the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office.

The Tulsa Police Department has about 120 Ford Explorers in service and tells me its aware of a safety bulletin issued a few years ago, but no reports from officers about exhaust leaks.

Owasso Police said carbon monoxide detectors were installed in the Explorers six months ago.

The Rogers County Sheriff’s Office started in June.

Major Coy Jenkins said once they noticed a problem they took the affected SUVs to the dealership and got the issued fixed.

"The thing people have got to understand that this is a mobile office for us. We spend most of our time. The guys will be in and out of these cars as much as 12 hours a day,” said Jenkins.

Ford Motor Company told NBC’s KXAN in Austin, Texas the company acknowledged the incidents where “customers detected an exhaust odor in Explorers and Police Interceptor units, but they don’t believe it poses a safety risk.”

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