Vehicle Recalls Are Rising!
This year has been especially hard on a number of vehicle owners. An increase in vehicle recalls in 2018 has put drivers and used car buyers across the United States at an increased safety risk for accidents and under tremendous stress when it comes to repairs. According to Carfax, more than one out of five vehicles in the country is under a recall- affecting approximately 57 million cars! What’s even more shocking is at least 30% of recalled vehicles remain active on the roads, and some of the owners have no idea they are endangering themselves and others by operating them.
Most and Least Recalled Vehicles
While some vehicle models have only had one or two recalls ever, others are prone to several, possibly even within the same year. A study published by iSeeCars using data from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) examined vehicle recalls from 2013 to 2017, identifying the vehicles on the market with the most and least number of recalls:
Most Recalled Vehicles:
- Mercedes-Benz C-Class
- GMC Sierra
- BMW 3/4 Series
- Dodge Durango
- Nissan Pathfinder
- Ram Pickup
- Toyota 4Runner
- Dodge Charger
- Chrysler 300
- Chevrolet Tahoe
Least Recalled Vehicles:
- Hyundai Accent
- Chevrolet Equinox
- Toyota Corolla
- Honda Civic
- Honda CR-V
- Honda Accord
- Subaru Crosstrek
- Toyota Camry
- Hyundai Elantra
- GMC Terrain
Consumers should always look for a history of recalls before purchasing a new or used vehicle. Not all recalls are as dangerous as others, so understanding the different types of recalls and how to find them can be crucial in purchasing a safe and reliable vehicle for you and your family.
Why Are Vehicles Recalled
There are thousands of reasons for why a vehicle could be under a recall, but most fall under two categories: safety-related and non-safety related. NHTSA provides a few examples of each that consumers should be aware of when it comes to understanding vehicle recalls:
Safety-Related Recall Examples:
- Steering components.
- Fuel system issues.
- Accelerator controls that break or stick.
- Wheel malfunctions.
- Engine cooling problems.
- Windshield wiper failures.
- Seat failures.
- System wiring malfunctions.
- Defective safety seats and seatbelts.
Non-Safety-Related Recall Examples:
- Nonstructural rust on vehicle body.
- Air condition and radio malfunctions.
- Ordinary wear of equipment such as shock absorbers, batteries, brake pads, and exhaust systems.
- Paint quality issues.
- Excessive oil consumption.
Naturally, car owners should pay more attention to safety-related recalls when they are issued. These types of recalls could lead to serious accidents, injuries, and even fatalities if not addressed.
Is Your Vehicle On Recall?
Knowing the difference between safety-related and non-safety related recalls will do you no good if you aren’t aware there is a recall on your vehicle. And when it comes to keeping on top vehicle safety, many car owners are confused about how to locate this information. When a recall is issued, dealers and manufacturers send out a notice in the mail to consumers with the information on why the recall was issued and repairs needed to repair the malfunctioning parts. But these pertinent mailings do not always make their way to the owners, while other times they may get misplaced or lost before repair dates are scheduled timely.
For anyone looking to see if their vehicle is on recall, NHTSA has developed an online search tool to help. Using your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) consumers can look up: safety recalls that are incomplete on any vehicle, safety recalls conducted over the past 15 calendar years, safety recalls conducted by major light automakers which include motorcycle manufacturers. For help finding your VIN number, visit https://www.autocheck.com/vehiclehistory/autocheck/en/vinbasics.
Who Is Liable For Vehicle Recalls
Dealers and manufactures in Connecticut are responsible for notifying you in a timely manner regarding recalls on your vehicle. But that doesn’t that mean they are off the hook for damages once you’ve received it. If a driver sustains an injury due to a recalled part or function on a vehicle, the courts will take into consideration multiple factors in determining liability:
- Did the owner receive the recall?
- When did the owner receive the recall prior to the accident?
- Was there a reasonable timeline provided to fix the recalled part between when the recall notice was received and when the accident occurred?
- Was the recall notice clear regarding what part(s) needed to be fixed?
- Was the dealer available to fix the part(s) in a timely manner?
- What actions did the driver take after the recall was received?
Depending on the answers to these questions, car owners may not be liable for accidents and injuries resulting from a vehicle recall. If you or a loved one has sustained an injury due to a malfunctioning or defective recalled part in a vehicle, the law firm of Jacobs & Wallace is here to fight for you. Contact our winning team today to explore all your options regarding your case and to seek justice against negligent dealers and manufacturers for putting your safety on the road at risk.