Rollaway Risks in Fiat Chrysler Cars Concern Experts
If you believe that you have successfully parked your car, you may be surprised if the car starts to roll on its own. A moving car that is not controlled and that a driver expects is parked can be a dangerous thing. That car could roll into someone, causing an accident that results in injuries or even fatalities. USA Today reported on one fatal incident recently with a rollaway car that allegedly led to the June death of an actor named Anton Yelchin.
Unfortunately, if you own certain Fiat Chrysler cars, you could be at risk of your car moving on its own and potentially causing a rollaway accident. Investigators are looking into reports of rollaway cars on several vehicles including 2013 to 2016 Ram 1500 pickup trucks, and Dodge Durango SUVs that were sold from 2014 to 2016.
The risk of a rollaway due to a problem with a car is just one of many dangers consumers face when a vehicle is defective in its design or when a car has defective parts. Far too many cars have had to be recalled in recent years due to defects and the investigation into problems with Fiat-Chrysler vehicles could just add one more recall to an already long list.
Consumers have few options to avoid putting themselves in jeopardy when buying a car, as so many vehicles from so many different brands have been recalled. For consumers, knowing consumer protection regulations such as the California lemon law could be very important in seeking recourse if a car turns out to have serious issues.
The Potential Risk of Rollaway Accidents in Fiat Chrysler Cars
USA Today indicates that an investigation is underway into rollaway risks after reports of problems and injuries arose. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration received complaints from 43 different vehicle owners, prompting NHTSA's Office of Defect Investigation to launch a probe into safety issues. There have also been a total of 9 reported injuries and 25 collisions in which the vehicles were alleged to have rolled away, even after drivers had put the vehicle into park.
The vehicle manufacturer has indicated it will comply fully with NHTSA's investigation. A spokesperson for the car company also reminded motorists that it remains “prudent practice" for "all drivers to use their vehicles' parking brakes." NHTSA also recommends the use of parking brakes; however, NHTSA’s Office of Defect Investigations is especially concerned that some complaining drivers who alleged rollaways had happened had already activated the parking brake when the car began to move on its own.
If the investigation reveals a defect and a recall is initiated, it will be one of many that have impacted consumers. Consumers face a serious safety risk due to defects and must cope with a lot of stress and hassle if their car turns out to be unsafe. It is important for consumers to understand how the lemon law and other consumer protection laws can help them to protect their interests when coping with car problems.