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Vehicle recalls surpass old records for defects

Defective products have recently plagued vehicles from most major manufacturers, including General Motors, Honda and Fiat Chrysler. Car dealerships in Georgia and across the country have increased hiring of auto technicians to handle the record-setting amount of recalled vehicles coming in for repairs. Massive recalls in 2014 that identified approximately 64 million vehicles as dangerous due to defective systems more than doubled the previous record for auto recalls established in 2004.

Numbers from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration listed over half a million vehicles from Fiat Chrysler as having defective suspension parts responsible for vehicles going out of control. Deadly fires have occurred in over 1 million Jeeps. The agency imposed a civil penalty of $105 million on Fiat Chrysler for numerous failures, which included not notifying the NHTSA and taking too long to inform consumers of the risks.

To correct the problems, automobile companies are either paying for repairs or offering above-market trade-in deals to vehicle owners. The extraordinary number of recalls has created increased demand for auto technicians. Large dealerships such as Sonic Automotive and Group 1 Automotive have reported hiring hundreds of extra employees this year in order to cope with the workload.

As the scope of these recalls illustrate, a person could suffer an accident caused by a defective vehicle part well before the problem has been identified by authorities. A person injured or disabled in an accident might choose to have an attorney review the accident report and evaluate the evidence for signs of negligence. Manufacturers are responsible for the safety of their products, and they could be held liable for damages in a lawsuit brought by an injured victim.

Source: Forbes, "Recalls Swamp U.S. Auto Dealerships", Jim Jenry, July 28, 2015

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