It seems like a new vehicle is recalled every day for varying reasons. A quick check of the evening news can confirm this. Just this year, Honda (airbags), Jeep (brakes), and General Motors (ignition switches) have issued mass recalls of popular vehicles.
CBS News, last year reached a record high for recalls, with numbers reaching 64 million. This is mostly a product of General Motor’s ignition switch recall, which affected over 27 million vehicles and is blamed for 124 deaths. This year has seen 32 million recalls, the second most ever.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been receiving heat for being too lenient on defective vehicles, and they have responded to these critics. The NHTSA has made great strides in holding manufacturers responsible for recalls. Just this week the NHTSA fined Takata, manufacturer of airbags that can explode and spew shards of metal, $70 million with an option to raise to $200 million if the company does not respond accordingly
This tougher policy has been largely attributed the NHTSA’s new administrator, Mark Rosekind. Safety advocate Joan Claybrook, a former head of the NHTSA herself, told CBS “They are doing a whole lot better. The new administrator, Mark Rosekind, has a different, tougher attitude toward enforcement.”