In recent years, safety recalls for cars sold in the United States have been rising exponentially. There may be several factors responsible for this phenomenon, including more cars being sold, and the use of common parts across multiple model lines. Not only have the number of recall campaigns been steadily increasing over the past few years, but also the total number of vehicles recalled. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), recalls have been increasing each year since 2011. Many consumers see this as a sign of declining safety and reliability of vehicles across the board.
Factors Contributing to the Rising Rate of Recalls
- Increasingly common use of parts across multiple model and brand lines.
- Increased oversight and reaction time by regulators and agencies like the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Department of Justice.
- Increased media attention to the issue, which leads to greater self-reporting of problems.
- Since the disastrous economic downturn of 2008, major automakers have been selling more cars, setting all time records in 2015 and 2016; years which also had a record number of recalls.
Widespread Failure to Address Recalls
In addition to the rate of recalls increasing steadily every year, there is another disturbing trend. Thirty percent of all recalled vehicles remain on the roads, unrepaired. This is because people may minimize the severity of the issue and the necessity to make the repair, or because car dealerships sell used cars with open recalls. Many people are unaware that their vehicle has been subject to a recall. The NHTSA urges all car owners to check their vehicle identification number (VIN) on the recalls page of their website every year, like they would check the batteries in their home smoke detectors. Vehicles may change hands many times, being sold through online marketplaces, person to person. If you have purchased a used car, make sure to check if there is an open recall on it. Most car dealerships fix recalls at no cost to the consumer. Failing to address safety issues with a recalled vehicle could pose a safety risk to many motorists on the road.
New Search Tool for Checking Recall Status
In addition to the recall page of NHTSA’s website, automakers have announced the launch of a new search tool. Approved commercial and government entities can search for open recalls up to 10,000 cars at once, free of charge. This new tool is due to a partnership between the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers and the Association of Global Automakers. Together, these entities represent 99 percent of all automakers in America.
Columbia Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Help Victims Claim Compensation They Deserve
If you have suffered a car accident due to the negligence of others, the Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. are ready to help. We represent clients injured in all types of car accidents caused by negligence, whether caused by another driver, automaker, or dealer. We fight beside accident victims, helping them obtain the full amount of compensation that they deserve. To learn more, call us today at 803-929-3600 or contact us online.
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