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From Products Liability Law Daily, August 1, 2016

NHTSA extends oversight of FCA consent order submissions for another year

By Pamela C. Maloney, J.D.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has exercised its option to renew the monthly submissions and monthly meetings outlined in the FCA US Consent Order for an additional year, according to an FCA US LLC press release issued on July 29, 2016. As stated in NHTSA’s letter to FCA US, "NHTSA’s exercise of its option to renew these requirements is not based on a concern about FCA’s performance to date, but rather to facilitate continued communication between FCA and NHTSA on potential defect issues."

Under the terms of the July 2015 consent order, FCA agreed to unprecedented oversight for three years, which included the hiring an independent monitor approved by NHTSA to assess, track, and report the company’s recall performance [see Products Liability Law Daily’s July 27, 2015 analysis]. In response to NHTSA’s announcement regarding the extension of the agency’ oversight, FCA US agreed that the monthly meetings, and the information provided in connection with those meetings, have been very effective and productive in facilitating timely and open communication between the company and NHTSA relating to potential defect issues. The company expressed its hope that these meetings, and the transparency of the information shared, has demonstrated FCA US’ commitment to meeting and exceeding the requirements of the consent order.

In accordance with another of its obligation under the consent order, i.e., to develop a Best Practices plan that contains written procedures on these performance allegations and must allocate worktime for employee training on these best practices, FCA US hosted the inaugural Automotive Safety Recall Best Practices Summit this past May, during which the company shared best practices for recall execution and presented research on obstacles that discourage consumers from responding to recall notices. As part of its goal to lead best practices in vehicle safety—including industry education and outreach—FCA US pledged to working with NHTSA and the industry to create meaningful changes that would bring long-lasting improvements in vehicle safety for our customers.

Companies: FCA US LLC

MainStory: TopStory MotorVehiclesNews

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