Why the Chrysler Recall Matters: Refusal May Set a Dangerous Precedent
Chrysler made news recently when it refused to accept the NHTSA’s recommendation concerning a recall of 2.7 million Jeeps. The Jeep models in question are the 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee and the 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty, which according to the NHTSA are vulnerable to fire and explosion in a crash. (1)
The gas tanks in these models are rear-mounted and have been alleged to catch fire or explode upon impact. The federal agency findings show the Grand Cherokee with 32 rear-end crashes, which resulted in 44 deaths and the Liberty with five crashes accounting for seven deaths. (2) Chrysler maintains that this is not an unusually high number for the time frame and number of vehicles on the road and is thus refusing to comply with the NHTSA’s request.
According to Austin Personal Injury Lawyer Jack Zinda, “Chrysler’s decision could have a number of ripple effects, some of which could lead to potentially dangerous outcomes for motorists. For instance, Chrysler could be setting a precedent for other auto manufacturers to ignore NHTSA recommendations and this in turn could diminish the agency’s power. This could potentially lead to an increase in the number of unsafe vehicles on the road. A higher number of unsafe vehicles in turn would lead to an increase in the number of severe injuries and fatalities on the roads in the coming years.”
Chrysler’s refusal has surprised many analysts, given the Toyota recall in the late 2000’s where gas pedals were alleged to have caused serious accidents. (3)
Experts in the industry believe that if Chrysler continues to refuse to recall the Grand Cherokee and Liberty models from the years in question, they could wind up in a lengthy, expensive court battle. In the Toyota recall, the NHTSA fined the auto company a record $66 million dollars for failing to report problems quickly enough and for dragging its feet during the recall. (4)
About Zinda Law Group PLLC
Zinda Law Group provides highly skilled legal services to individuals throughout the state of Texas. The Austin personal injury law firm is committed to giving every client top-notch representation regardless of the size of the case. They are well known for their compassionate advocacy and tough approach. Zinda Law Group handles every type of personal injury case including injuries that have occurred as a result of a faulty vehicle. The Austin law firm offers free legal consultations and works on a contingency fee basis.
(1) USA TODAY, June 6, 2013 - http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2013/06/04/chrysler-jeep-liberty-grand-cherokee-recall/2388607/
(2) USA TODAY, June 6, 2013 - http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2013/06/04/chrysler-jeep-liberty-grand-cherokee-recall/2388607/
(3) M Live June 11, 2013 - http://www.mlive.com/auto/index.ssf/2013/06/chrysler_continues_to_stand_it.html
(4) M Live June 11, 2013 - http://www.mlive.com/auto/index.ssf/2013/06/chrysler_continues_to_stand_it.html