a tailgate for a large truck is open next to a standing man

About The Ram Tailgate Recall

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) received notice in December 2022 that Stellantis, the automotive manufacturing corporation that owns Chrysler and makes Dodge Ram trucks, was issuing a voluntary recall for approximately 1.23 million Ram model trucks. These Dodge Ram trucks were recalled because their tailgates would unexpectedly open, resulting in the loss of unsecured cargo and creating the potential for traffic hazards and motor vehicle accidents.

Which models of Chrysler Ram trucks were affected by the December 2022 recall?

Chrysler recalled certain models of Ram pickup trucks manufactured between 2019 and 2022, including:

  • Ram 1500s built between February 20, 2018 and July 10, 2022
  • Ram 2500s built between May 18, 2018 and June 1, 2022
  • Ram 3500s built between June 13, 2018 and June 1, 2022

The recall did not include ram trucks with multifunction tailgates, including those with a flip-down or 40/60 split tailgate, Ram 1500 Classics, or any truck with a tailgate sensor.

What caused the tailgate to open inadvertently?

Misaligned tailgate strikers on some Ram trucks failed to secure the tailgates when appropriately closed. This caused the tailgates to drop without warning, sometimes while the vehicles were in operation. Strikers are the round pieces where the tailgate latch strikes and are visible when the tailgate is in the open position. The latching system relies upon the appropriate alignment of the latch and striker to operate safely.

Although the tailgates of affected vehicles may have seemed closed, they were not secured since one of the latches could not correctly clasp around the striker. In some cases, the defect occurred while vehicles were in operation due to hitting a bump in the roadway or shifting cargo pressing on the tailgate, causing it to swing open. This increases the potential of cargo spilling out of the truck onto the roadway, causing a serious traffic hazard.

What can Chrysler Ram truck owners do?

The recall required Chrysler dealers to inspect the tailgate striker alignment on each recalled truck as it matched up to the box latch and adjust them when necessary. These services were to be performed for truck owners free of charge. It’s important to note that a certified vehicle dealer should always perform recall work. Proof of recall repairs helps with the vehicle’s resale value as well. 

To find out if your Dodge Ram truck is part of this recall, check your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s recall website. Registered owners of the impacted vehicles should also have received a written notice via First Class mail about the recall in January 2023.

Were any injuries reported as a result of this defect?

At the time of the recall, no accidents or injuries had been reported due to the striker malfunction issue. However, it’s possible that vehicle owners experienced problems but were not yet aware of the defective nature of their tailgate’s latching mechanism at the time.

What effects can a vehicle recall have on accident liability?

Most motor vehicle accidents focus on the at-fault driver’s conduct and liability for the crash. Insurance claims for property damage and medical expenses would be filed with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier, who would be responsible for the damages. Liability is often more difficult to determine when a vehicle defect is to blame for or contributes to a wreck or harm to an individual.

Proof of Liability

Motor vehicle accident claims are typically based on another person’s negligent behavior. The plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit only has to show that the defendant:

  1. Had a duty of care to avoid causing injury to other drivers on the road.
  2. They breach their duty of care.
  3. Caused harm to the plaintiff as a result of that breach.

Product Liability Lawsuits

When the vehicle’s operator doesn’t know there is an issue, for example, with their vehicle’s tailgate latch system, they may not be legally liable for an accident caused by its malfunction. Instead, the manufacturer is responsible for any accidents since they are liable for the problem that caused them.

Manufacturers must create safe and dependable products when used as the public intends. Companies that fail to do so can be held legally liable through product liability lawsuits and ordered to pay damages caused by their negligence.

Vehicle Owner Liability

If, however, the driver of a vehicle is aware of the defect because they received notice of a posted recall from the vehicle’s manufacturer, they can resume liability if something happens because of their negligence in repairing it. This is because the court may see their actions or failure to act as contributing to the accident.

That’s why following through with any recall repair notices as soon as you know they exist is important.

What if I or a family member was injured due to the Dodge Ram Tailgate Recall?

Suppose you believe you or a family member was injured or suffered property damage due to a faulty Ram truck tailgate latch. In that case, you should seek out the services of a product liability attorney in Texas or Louisiana. Lawyers specializing in product liability cases have in-depth knowledge of cases like yours and can guide you in determining who was at fault for your injuries.

The cost of medical bills, vehicle replacement, and lost wages can be economically overwhelming, and you shouldn’t pay for a corporation’s safety oversight. Many such companies have settlement funds to help individuals harmed by faulty products. The only way to end product liability negligence is to hold large corporations responsible when accidents occur.


Morris & Dewett provides this information to the public for general education and interest. The firm does not represent clients in every topic discussed in answers to frequent questions. The information is curated and produced based on questions commonly asked or search terms commonly used. Every effort is made to provide accurate information. Do not make any decision solely based on the information provided, please seek relevant counsel for each topic area. Consult an attorney before making any legal decision, consult a doctor before making any medical decision, and consult a financial advisor before making any fiscal decision. Information provided is not legal advice. If you have any legal needs, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are pleased to assist you.

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