As part of an effort to determine whether millions of Jeep Grand Cherokees from the 1993-2004 model years should be recalled because their gas tanks may be susceptible to rupturing in rear impacts, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating a recent crash in which a Florida man died.
“As part of our open defect investigation, N.H.T.S.A. plans to inspect the Jeep Grand Cherokee that was involved in a recent Orlando area crash,” Karen Aldana, an agency spokeswoman, wrote in an e-mail.
The accident occurred on Nov. 16 on Interstate 4 in Lake Mary, Fla., according to a report from the state’s highway patrol.
The report said that a 1997 Grand Cherokee was struck from behind by a 2002 Mercury Mountaineer after the driver did not notice that traffic ahead had stopped. The Jeep caught fire after the impact, and a 24-year-old passenger was trapped in the vehicle and died.