- - Tuesday, July 17, 2012

DETROIT — Federal safety regulators are investigating complaints that the throttles can stick on Ford Escape and Mazda Tribute SUVs and cause them to crash.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says in documents that the investigation includes 730,000 Escapes and Tributes from the 2001 to 2004 model years. The recalled SUVs all have six-cylinder engines.

The safety agency says it has received 99 complaints about the problem. The agency says there were 13 crashes, nine injuries and one death.

The throttles on the SUVs can fail to return to idle when the driver takes his foot off the gas pedal. The agency is investigating whether some of the complaints stem from repairs made on a previous recall.


AIRLINES

United pilots vote to authorize strike

CHICAGO — Pilots at United Airlines say they could go on strike after two years of failed negotiations on a new contract at the airline formed through a combination with Continental.

The Air Line Pilots Association said Tuesday that of the pilots who voted, 99 percent authorized a strike.

Federal law includes many obstacles to strikes among airline workers, and the vote doesn’t mean pilots will be walking off the job anytime soon.

United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy said the airline expected a strike vote, which is “not uncommon at this point in negotiations.”

The National Mediation Board has not declared an impasse in negotiations, a necessary precursor to a legal strike. If the board, which has been mediating the negotiations, determines talks are deadlocked, it could start a 30-day countdown toward a legal strike or lockout. The pilots’ union has asked the board to take that step.

Even if the board cleared the way for a strike, Congress or the president could block it to prevent disruption in a key industry.

FACTORIES

Industrial production rose in June

U.S. industrial production rose in June as factories made more cars, machines and business equipment, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday. Factory output recovered to levels reached earlier this spring but appears to be leveling off.

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