3260 Executive Drive,
Joliet, IL 60431
Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Millions of Recalled Vehicles Remain Unrepaired

 Posted on September 28, 2021 in Car Crashes

car accident lawyerWhen a manufacturer designs and produces a product that eventually makes its way to the public, the public trusts that the product has gone through rigorous safety testing and that stringent quality controls are in place during the manufacturing process. That is not always the case and many products end up being recalled. Vehicles are one of the most common products recalled each year. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, millions of recalled vehicles are never repaired but are still on the roads, creating a dangerous situation for both the vehicle’s driver and everyone they share the roads with.

Vehicle Recalls

A vehicle can be recalled in a number of different ways. Sometimes, the vehicle manufacturer discovers the defect – either on their own or through warranty claims filed or complaints from customers and/or vehicle dealers – and voluntarily issues the recall in order to repair the issue. In other cases, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) receives complaints from consumers and will conduct an investigation that eventually results in the recall.

Once a recall is issued, all vehicle owners are supposed to be notified in writing, explaining details of the recall and what steps they need to take to get their vehicle repaired. The NHTSA has reported in the past that approximately one-third of owners fail to get their vehicles repaired. The older a recalled vehicle is, the less likely it will be brought in for repairs. This is often due to the vehicle manufacturer’s inability to contact the owner because they have an old address or the vehicle has been sold to someone else. There are also many owners who choose to ignore the recall notices they receive.

Not only are unrepaired recalled vehicles still on the road, but many of them are sold to unsuspecting buyers. While federal law bans selling new vehicles that are in an open recall, that law does not apply to used vehicles.

Federal Audit

The issue has become so problematic that the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of Transportation has announced it is conducting an audit to determine why so many recalled vehicles remain unrepaired. The NHTSA is the federal agency that is responsible for the oversight of all vehicle safety recall campaigns and assessment of how effective the campaigns are, yet millions of recalled vehicle owners do not appear to heed those campaigns.

In announcing the audit, the IG used the Takata airbag recall as an example of how the ball is being dropped, pointing out that although there have been more than 50 million defective airbags that have been replaced, there are still 11 million more defective airbags under recall that are sitting in vehicles being operated.

Contact a Will County Personal Injury Attorney

If you have been injured in a crash that you suspect was caused by a defect in the vehicle, contact a Joliet, IL product liability lawyer to find out what legal recourse you may have. Call Michael J. Lichner - Will County Personal Injury Lawyer at 815-730-1977 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.


https://www.oig.dot.gov/sites/default/files/NHTSA ODI Audit Announcement 4.13.2021.pdf



Share this post:
Back to Top