Patching up

September 3, 2010 § Leave a comment

Ferrari burned out

Image by Sunset Noir via Flickr

Recently there was a Ferrari catching fire in town. It’s owner wasn’t speeding or any such thing. Just idling along with the traffic and then smoke emitted from the rear. By the time he pulled to the side, the car was already on fire. Ferrari calls the problem a “thermal incident” and sent engineers to the owners of the specific model to investigate.

A “thermal incident”, how lovely. Is a car crash soon to be called a “kinetic incident”?  A plane crash a “gravity incident”? Was Waterloo maybe simply a “strategic incident”? And would Napoleon approve of the label? Right now there seem to be a number of “petroleum incidents” in the Gulf of Mexico but this is surely nothing to worry about.

The reason for Ferarri’s “thermal incidents” seems to be an adhesive that isn’t up to the temperatures and can overheat. A reminder of the fact that cars today are glued together. Ferrari’s answer is to present the owners of burned out models with new ones and to modify those not as yet on fire with mechanical fasteners on the critical spots.

Which they probably call “adapting the structure to specific customer requirements”.


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