Toyota RAV4’s Probed by Feds for Battery Defect
U.S. federal regulators are looking into possible battery issues that could put 1.9 million Toyota RAV4 sport utility vehicles at risk of fire.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received at least 11 complaints of engine compartment fires, Autoweek reports. The probe could eventually lead to a recall of nearly 2 million vehicles from model years 2013-2018.
NHTSA says it believes that the fires are the result of a short in the car’s twelve-volt batteries. The positive battery terminal can short against the metal battery holder, cut power to the vehicle, and result in a possible fire, the agency said.
“A majority of thermal events occurred during driving conditions, with four taking place with the ignition off,” NHTSA said in a document posted to its website. “Drivers experienced stalling prior to the thermal event in half of the instances where the vehicle was in motion. The twelve-volt battery was indentured as the area of origin in a majority of the incidents involved.”
Last year, Toyota reportedly recalled a small number of RAV4 and other vehicles over a steering column that the company said could make airbags defective. The company also called back another group of the SUVs because of a headlight defect.
Legal Rights for California Car Owners and Lessors
Defects like those being investigated in RAV4s are unfortunately common. They often do not become apparent until long after vehicles are shipped to dealers and sold or leased to drivers, putting everyone on the road at risk.
That is where the California lemon law comes in. The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act requires car manufacturers to perform a wide range of repairs on vehicles while they are under warranty.
The law also obligates the company to buy back vehicles that it is unwilling or unable to fix. Although the manufacturer can instead offer to replace the vehicle, it is up to the owner or lessor to accept or reject this alternative arrangement.
There is no specific number of repair requests or attempts that must be made before this requirement kicks in. That is one reason why it is vital to seek the assistance of an experienced Los Angeles lemon law attorney. The lemon law forces the car manufacturer to pay certain legal fees related to enforcing your right.
Speak With a Los Angeles Lemon Law Attorney
If you have been stuck with a defective car in California, a Los Angeles lemon law attorney at Bickel Sannipoli APC can help you fight back.
Our firm has represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases across the state. We work aggressively to resolve these cases for the people that we represent, guiding them through the legal process every step of the way.
Our offices are conveniently located in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with a California lemon law attorney.