That must ahve been a fluke - the Escape's brake lines are pretty well protected and unless you are in the salt belt should be OK. I'd check the rest just to be safe.
I've found the Internet tends to amplify things way out of proportion. Sure there are common issues (like the 3.0 oil pan and timing gaskets that like to leak) but those are the same with any car. Ask a Toyota owner about sludge (might not be an issue now) or a Honda owner about their automatic transmission (still an issue on V6 models).
Really not sure about the 2013 recalls - from what I remember it was for a bum cooling systme plug and a software reprogram. I've been keeping an eye on them as the wife really likes them and when hers hits 150k we may start looking at new cars. I wouldn't trust any 12-13 year old car with 150k+ on it and at that age things may start going (like transmissions).