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Huge Honda CR-V Recall Over Car Fire Fears

(c) Sky News 2012

Honda has said it will recall nearly 500,000 cars after a fault was found that could lead to the driver's door catching fire.

The Japanese carmaker said the recall was announced after it found water may enter the power window switch on the door, which could ultimately cause the switch to overheat, melt and catch fire.

It said the recall affected about 489,000 CR-V sport utility vehicles (SUVs) in Europe (Chicago Options: ^REURUSD - news) and the United States.

Some 220,000 CR-Vs in Europe and around 268,000 in the US would be examined. Another 100 in Africa were also being recalled.

Honda said all the recalled vehicles are from model years 2002 through to 2006.

There have been reports of five switch fires, but no crashes or injuries have been reported related to the issue, Honda said.

CR-V owners have been advised to park cars outside and away from structures as a safety precaution, as a fire could start even when the ignition is off.

But spokesman Ed Miller emphasised that a switch is unlikely to catch fire unless someone spilled liquid on it or let a large amount of rain into the vehicle through an open driver's window.

Honda, Japan (EUREX: FMJP.EX - news) 's third-largest vehicle manufacturer, did not give estimated costs for the huge recall.

The safety alert comes days after it recalled more than 600,000 Accord cars in North America over fears of a power steering fluid leak causing engine bay fires.

Earlier last week, it also recalled 820,000 Civic cars and Pilot SUVs because of headlights failures.

The company will begin contacting CR-V owners in November (Xetra: A0Z24E - news) and cars will be repaired for free.

Honda said it will install a cover plate over the switch to prevent any liquid ingress.

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