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NHTSA Wants Consumers to Complain About Their Cars and Help Prevent Injury

Auto DefectThe past couple of years have been full of auto defects and recalls – some of which resulted in the death and injury of numerous victims. It is possible that at least some could have been prevented, had there been more reports of related but more minor issues. It is that potential to save lives that is motivating the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) to push for consumer reporting numbers on the visors of vehicles. They hope that doing so will increase the number of reports they receive on defective vehicles.

The Anatomy of a Defective Car Recall

Although some defects are caught and recalled directly by the manufacturer, the majority are investigated by the NHTSA. Those investigations are sparked by a trend in complaints, which are received from consumers. If the agency discovers a defect that could potentially compromise the safety of the public, they initiate a recall campaign to ensure consumers understand the risk and their rights. This may come in the form of a refund, repair, or a replacement.

In the case of a repair, the item is supposed to be installed at no charge to the consumer. Refunds are typically the purchase price of the vehicle, minus a reasonable depreciation allowance. Replacements can either be on equipment, which is installed at no charge to the consumer, or a complete replacement of the vehicle, which is supposed to be an identical or similar vehicle.

When to File a Complaint

While the NHTSA does not have a specific number of complaints needed to start an investigation, they do use trends of complaints. What they are really looking for are any that might be considered a safety defect. Examples might include steering components that break away, wiring problems that could result in fire or a loss of vehicle control, or an accelerator control that sticks or breaks. Non-safety defects, which would not necessarily result in involvement from the NHTSA might include an air conditioner that does not function properly, normal wear and tear on a vehicle or its components, and excessive oil consumption.

Contact Our Experienced Auto Defect Injury Lawyers

If you or someone you love has been injured or killed by an auto defect, you have the right to pursue compensation. At Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP, we will stand as an ally in your fight for justice. We will protect your rights and pursue the most favorable outcome possible for your situation. Schedule a consultation with our experienced San Jose auto defect injury lawyers today to learn more. Call (408) 289-1417.

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