"Yet the company hasn’t changed the design that a Thetford employee acknowledged in testimony lies at the heart of the problem, a metal boiler tube that can crack, allowing flammable gases to escape."
I think he was referring to this part of the article.
"A company engineer also testified in a 2012 deposition that Norcold has paid claims on more than 800 fires allegedly caused by its 1200 series refrigerator since 1999."
The lawsuit seems limited to one series of NORCOLD RV fridge; the 1200 series.
"(Sweden’s Dometic Group makes refrigerators with a similar design, which have also been the subject of lawsuits and an NHTSA recall.)"
This recall added a thermal switch to shut down the fridge in case there is a stack overheat for any reason. The recall was limited to certain fridge models that used a boiler tube shield made similarly.
Official Dometic Recall - DometicUSA
Anyone who has not done this simple modification is encouraged to have it done. The recall has been around for several years and involves adding a heat sensing thermal breaker and a sheet metal shield (that also prevents flame blowout while traveling).
The article referenced indicates over 80% compliance to date, but that number is based on total units manufactured and does not include scrapped units or units that were repaired/replaced prior to the recall.
If your fridge has the stack over temperature breaker your unit is as safe as any evaporative unit is going to be.
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