US: Auto recalls hit another record in 2015, NHTSA says image

Last year was the second one in a row in which automakers recalled a record number of cars in the United States, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.

2015 was an all-time high in terms of automotive recalls in the US, as more than more than 51 million vehicles were affected by safety campaigns in nearly 900 callbacks, Mark Rosekind, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said. It is the second year in a row with such unwelcome record. The agency previously said that recall record was set in 2014 at about 64 million vehicles, but NHTSA adjusted the numbers in the latest report released, saying the 2014 total was “just below” 51 million vehicles. These high figures come after nine years in which recalls barely hit the 20 million mark, between 2005 and 2013, dropping below the old record of 32 million cars from 2000.

Rosekind said this upward concerning trend prompted more action from automakers and NHTSA as well to find defects more quickly and repair more recalled cars. A first step into the right direction has been made last week when 18 major carmakers announced they reached an agreement with the US Transportation Department on a voluntary program concerning efforts to improve auto safety. “Massive recalls are still a prominent feature of the safety landscape,” Rosekind stated. “We also hope the agreement with major automakers announced last week will help prevent problems and identify them sooner when they do occur. But identifying defects is not enough; we have to make sure they get fixed.”

Last year’s record was driven in part by the faulty Takata airbags, as the Japanese supplier has been linked to the recall of around 19 million vehicles in the US alone. However, the figure has rose now to 24 million, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently made another announcement saying an additional 5 million cars are to be recalled over Takata’s inflators, reporting also the 10th death linked to the “exploding” airbags.

Via Automotive News