Automakers to make Recall Information Easier to Find

By | August 16, 2013
In a U.S. ruling that was released earlier this week, automakers will now be required to install a tool on their websites for customers to more easily find information about vehicle recalls. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is requiring all motorcycle and car companies to provide this new tool by August 14, 2014. Not only will all automakers need to install this new tool, they will have to make all notices for recalls more detailed, including the words "urgent safety recall" in capital letters at the top of each letter that is sent out. These changes have been implemented to help customers more readily find information about recalls, as regulators believe this information is still too difficult to find. "Safety is our highest priority, and an informed consumer is one of our strongest allies in that effort," said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx in a recent statement. Several automakers already offer this tool to help customers find recall information. Also, the NHTSA allows all car owners to input their year, make, and model to see if their vehicle has been recently recalled.
This change may cause many automakers to create new websites, which will be potentially costly. Toyota and Ford are just some of the small group of automakers who already include a tool similar to this on their websites. However, the NHTSA is also making automakers follow new design standards for letters sent out via mail. In addition to the words "urgent safety recall," automakers must have all envelopes marked with "safety recall notice." Automakers must also customize all letters to include the VIN number of the recipient of each letter. On top of this, all envelopes must be stamped with the logos of the U.S. Department of Transportation and the NHTSA in either blue or black text, with a statement in red saying the letter is "an important safety recall notice issued in accordance with federal law." Source: Automotive News