Last January, South Florida drivers who owned Toyotas were in a frenzy with all the recalls due to the accelerator pedal sticking because of the floor mat. According to the Sun Sentinel over 2 million vehicles were being recalled because of the defect in some of Toyotas best selling models like RAV 4, Camry, Corolla, Avalon, and Highlander to name a few.
Our Port St. Lucie personal injury attorneys are happy to report that Toyota has agreed to settle the case with the federal government by paying record fines. At the same time we continue to warn South Florida motorists of the potential dangers in driving defective vehicles.
Toyota Motor Corporation has agreed to pay over $32 million in civil penalties to the Treasury Department’s General Fund for failure to recall two separate automobile defects in a timely manner. Toyota, one of the leaders in automobile manufacturing, has been under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for a “sticky pedal” defect as well as a faulty steering rod defect.
The first investigation for floor mats obstructing the accelerator pedal ended with a $16.375 million fine. Toyota recalled approximately 5 million vehicles in total for the malfunction of floor mats affecting the gas pedal forcing the car to accelerate undesirably. The company was found at fault for not recalling the defect within 5 days to the NHTSA, which, by law, is required.
The second investigation involved the cracking of steering rods, which caused a loss of steering. Effected vehicles were recalled in Japan but not in the United States. In time, consumers reported a defect in their steering wheel in the United States, and Toyota was accused of not recalling the vehicles soon enough. The outcome resulted in Toyota Motor Corp. being fined $16.050 million for failure to report the defect in a timely manner and withholding information from the NHTSA.
Recently purchased vehicles are always under warranty when something goes wrong but it is the obligation of the automobile manufacturer to warn you of defects so that you can have your car repaired in a timely manner. If you fear that your vehicle has been recalled for a defect, you can rely on Safer car as a valuable resource to get recall information as well as the safety ratings for your car.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a defective car accident in West Palm Beach or the surrounding areas, contact the Law Offices of Dean H. Freeman for legal assistance. For a free initial consultation call 800-529-2368.