According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), approximately 10,000 people die in drinking and driving related crashes every year. In an attempt to reach a goal of zero alcohol and impaired related deaths, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are recommending that states implement laws that will work toward that goal. (more…)
Archive for the ‘NHTSA’ Category
As one of the most effective automobile safety features invented, seat belts save thousands of lives every year. Unfortunately, one in five Americans fail to regularly wear their seat belt while driving or riding in a motor vehicle. (more…)
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), improvements in the automobile recall process is the direct result of better communication between the regulators and manufacturers. He also added that substantial increases in fines for not reporting a recall promptly was also a big factor in encouraging manufacturers to be more pro active with recalls (more…)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) main function is to prevent injuries, deaths, and reduce expensive costs due to traffic accidents. Their mission also includes issuing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards to contribute to energy security and address climate change. (more…)
Toyota will be fined the maximum penalty of $17.4 million for the second time since 2010, for failing to report automobile defects in a timely manner. In June of this year, Toyota announced a recall of over one hundred and fifty thousand 2010 Lexus RX350 and 2010 Lexus RX450H vehicles for problems with floor mats that could interfere with the accelerator pedal. (more…)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is warning car owners to get their vehicle inspected for potential lemon airbags. This includes any airbags bought online, used vehicles where the owner is unsure if the airbags have been replaced, and any owner who has had their airbags replaced by an independent repair shop not connected to a new car dealership. It is estimated that only 1% of U.S. vehicles may be affected by the problem, but that equals to tens of thousands units. (more…)
The Center for Auto Safety is urging Honda to issue a recall on certain 1999-2002 Honda Accords after an exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation exposed a potential safety issue. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) there have been 11 complaints since 2009 of sub frame rust that have left owners with vehicles that are unsafe to drive. The complaints allege that water from the air conditioning drain hose dips down onto the passenger side sub frame rusting it so badly that the frame can separate from the vehicle. The above video shows that while the passenger side disintegrated from rust, the driver side is often rust free.
A spokesperson for Honda confirmed that the company has also received similar complaints, but said they do not believe the defect warrants a safety bulletin or recall. In 2003 Honda changed the location of the drain hose, but said that the design change is unrelated to the problem. If the investigation should lead to a recall, approximately 1.5 million vehicles could be affected.
Automobile accidents are the leading cause of teenage deaths in the United States. Statistics show that in 2010, approximately 2,700 teens were killed and almost 282,000 were treated for injuries, giving them the highest average annual crash and traffic violation rates of any other age group. What causes teenage drivers to be such risky drivers? According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, there are several risk factors. They include:
- Poor hazard detection
- Low risk perception
- Higher risk taking
- Lack of seat belt use
- Lack of skill
- Alcohol and drugs
- Carrying passengers
- Night driving
The NHTSA believes there are proven methods to help teens become safer drivers, and have developed strategies to prevent motor vehicle related deaths and injuries. In July 1998, California enacted a new law that requires all new teen drivers to obtain drivers licenses through a three-step process. Research suggests that these graduated drivers licensing (GDL) programs can reduce accidents by up to 40%, by allowing teens to get their initial driving experience under low risk conditions. Under the program, step one includes:
- The student must drive with an adult over 25 years of age or with a licensed instructor.
- New drivers must complete a 6 hour drivers training course.
- He or she must keep a clean driving record.
- A zero tolerance towards alcohol must be followed.
- Effective July 2008, a ban on all devices, with or without hands free capability, must be followed by drivers under 18 years.
Once the student is ready to move on to the second step, they will receive a provisional license. Under the provisional license the driver must be older than 16 and have passed a behind the wheel driving test. For the first 12 months, or until the driver is 18, they are not allowed passengers under the age of 20 or to drive between the hours of 11 P.M. – 5 A.M. unless a licensed driver 25 years or older is present.
A full-privilege license may be granted after the driver successfully undergoes the first two steps for the proper amount of time and there are no outstanding DMV or court-ordered restrictions, suspensions, or probationâ€™s on the driverâ€™s record. The NHTSA encourages parents to work with their teenagers and monitor their driving to ensure their safety and the safety of everyone on the road.
Buy Here, Pay Here is a phrase for used car dealerships in which the company is both the seller and the loan holder . For years, they have operated under the radar, typically selling vehicles to consumers with bad credit at inflated interest rates, making repossessions common. Last fall, the Los Angeles Times ran a three part series on Buy Here, Pay Here dealerships which drew the attention of businesses and government officials.
In a step to protect consumers from these predatory vehicle loans, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law two bills regulating the practices of Buy Here Pay Here lots. The first bill will require these dealerships to provide warranties on every car they sell in California. The second will require dealers to post fair market values for their vehicles and give customers greater flexibility in making payments. A third bill which would have limited interest rates to 17% plus the federal funds rate, and provide buyers with a fifteen (15) day grace period before repossessing cars for a missed payment was vetoed by Brown. Brown wrote in his veto message that he was not convinced the evidence merits dealers to be regulated by the Department of Corporations under the California Finance Lender’s Law. He added that if consumers still need more protection once those bills are implemented, he and his administration would work with the Legislature to find an appropriate solution.
The Center for Auto Safety (CAS) is encouraging the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to open an investigation into certain 2002-2004 Ford Escape vehicles that could be susceptible to unintended acceleration after being repaired for another recall. According to the consumer safety group, the original recall involved accelerator cables snagging on the accelerator pedals, preventing the engine from returning to idle. The group says that almost a year later, Ford issued a technical service bulletin (TSB) which cautioned dealers to take extra care when correcting the recall because the adjacent cruise control cable could be damaged in the process. The damage could allow the cable to snag on a ridge in the engine cover causing unintended acceleration. There have been over 130 complaints from owners claiming they experienced sudden acceleration before and after the original recall was performed. The recall petition also mentions a case in Payson, Ariz., where a 17 year old died in a crash that was blamed on a snagged cruise control cable. According to Ford, they are currently working with the NHTSA to investigate the problem.