According to information released by Carfax, the vehicle history provider company, as of October 2015, there were 258.5 million vehicles traveling on U.S. roads. But company data reveals at least 47 million of those vehicles have unrepaired, open recalls. This means that one out of every five vehicles in operation have serious mechanical issues, leaving commuters at risk for serious or even deadly car crashes because of the defective parts found in these vehicles.
What is even more unsettling about these statistics is that the number one type of unrepaired recall vehicle on the road is the minivan, a top choice for many families with children. SUV’s come in at number two, followed by pickup trucks and cars.
The states with the highest rates of unfixed vehicles were Texas, Mississippi, Alaska, Utah and West Virginia.
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Last year, records were broken on the number of vehicle recalls issued by automakers, with almost 900 models – translating into more than 50 million vehicles – recalled.
One of the biggest recalls involved the Takata airbag defect, which affected at least 50 million U.S. vehicles and has been determined to be responsible for killing at least 11 people.
Coming on the heels of a previous recall involving millions of vehicles for defective airbags, Toyota Corp had another major recall in 2015, announcing that almost 3 million SUVs had defective seatbelts. In car accidents, the belts were found to separate from the seat upon impact.
The recalls have not eased up for 2016. Takata has recalled an additional 40 million airbags, which now brings the total number of vehicles affected at almost 70 million. Fiat Chrysler has recalled over one million vehicles because of unexpected rolling and transmission issues. Both GM and Ford have recalled almost 90,000 vehicles because front control arms in the vehicles may be welded incorrectly, significantly increasing a risk of a serious car crash. Honda has recalled 45,000 brand new Civics because the engines can stall out while the car is being driven.
Unfortunately, the Carfax report reveals that not only are we in danger because of the massive amount of defective auto parts in millions of vehicles, but that danger is magnified by careless or lax vehicle owners who fail to follow through and obtain the necessary repairs to fix these problems, which can be just as deadly as a driver who fails to practice safe driving behaviors.
If your loved one has been killed in a car crash involving an unrepaired, recalled vehicle, contact a skilled Virginia defective product attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the negligent driver and the manufacturer of the defective vehicle.