The summer of 2014 has been consumed with news about auto recalls. General Motors has been at the center of this news, with millions of cars recalled because of ignition switch concerns. The embattled automaker has even gone as far as taking out full page ads in newspapers advising consumers to use a single key in the ignition as a protective measure. Other GM recalls concern headlamp malfunctions and steering column issues.
Japanese automaker Subaru has also issued a recall. 660,000 vehicles, including Outbacks, Imprezas, Legacys and Foresters are being brought back to manufacturers so that they may correct problems caused by corroded brake lines.
The corrosion could cause the lines to break and ultimately cause the brakes to fail. This could also lead to an accident. The recall is concentrated to states where roads are salted during the winter months to prevent or abate ice formation on roads.
The recall is not only helpful sign for consumers, it is essentially a requirement for automakers. They have a continuing legal duty to keep consumers safe from hazards that are outside of their control. So when a defect is discovered that a consumer would not otherwise know about, a recall is essential in fulfilling that duty. Should an automaker ignore or conceal such a hazard after discovering it, and the hazard is the proximate cause of an accident, the automaker could be held liable.
Additionally, recalls for defects can play a huge role in accident investigations, because it could answer critical questions about fault in a crash.
Source: Latimes.com “Subaru recalls 660,238 cars because of corroded brakes,” Jerry Hirsch, July 3, 2014