Since May 2014, at least 407 LLVs have been damaged or destroyed in fires, or approximately one every five days, according to documents obtained by Motherboard via a Freedom of Information Act request.
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Motherboard reviewed 3,954 pages of documents regarding the LLV fires. The vast majority of those documents were investigation reports conducted by two different engineering firms that USPS hired to identify the cause of the fires. Those firms, Trident Engineering and Rimkus Consulting Group, declined to be interviewed by Motherboard citing confidentiality clauses in their contracts with USPS, which the USPS refused to release them from in order to discuss their findings. Kim Frum, a USPS spokesperson, said she was “unable to provide information” about whether or not there were injuries as a result of any fires.
In 125 cases, the trucks were so thoroughly destroyed that the investigators were unable to identify a probable fire cause. Of the remaining 282 fires where investigators could identify a likely cause, the only pattern was that there was no pattern.