Vehicle safety should be one of the most important points on an auto manufacturer’s agenda. But that’s not all—it should be a major concern for rental car companies as well. At the forefront of current issues surrounding recalled vehicles is the debate as to whether the rental car industry should adhere to stricter rules limiting the use and monitoring of recalled cars.
According to a recent Washington Post article, the Center for Auto Safety and the Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety asked the Federal Trade Commission to require Enterprise Holdings (the largest rental company in the U.S. made up of Enterprise, National and Alamo) to alter its policies and remove recalled vehicles from their rental fleets until they are properly fixed. The two groups argue that rental car companies throughout the United States fail to repair vehicles in a timely fashion as a way to save money. The question stands as to why the rental car industry should not have to fix vehicles under recall notice before renting them to customers in the same way that dealers fix recalled vehicles before they can be sold.
The potential safety threat is presented when rental car company customers do not know whether the vehicle they rent has been subject to a recall. This issue has been highlighted by a recent verdict for a 2004 fatal accident involving a PT Cruiser rental that had been recalled for a defective power steering hose that could initiate engine fires. Two sisters were killed in California due to a loss of steering ability from the vehicle defect. Moreover, concern regarding the state of vehicles being rented through these prominent rental car companies has increased due to the succession of Toyota safety recalls this year and other recalls by large automakers.
Until further legislation is created, you may want to make sure that the car you are about to rent has not been included in a safety recall before you enter into a contract to rent the vehicle. If you have any questions regarding your rights as a consumer, please contact California lawyer Howard D. Silver. Call (855) 341-2611 today for a free consultation.