NHTSA proposes vehicle recall notices be sent in ‘electronic manner’

Communication methods may include email, text messages, social media

Posted September 7, 2016

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a proposed rule on September 1 to amend the means of motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment recall notifications to owners and purchasers to be submitted in an “electronic manner.”

Specifically, NHTSA seeks to require electronic notification means in addition to first class mail notification to owners and purchasers. The agency is proposing to define “electronic means” to include “electronic mail, text messages, radio or television notifications, vehicle infotainment console messages, over-the-air alerts, social media or targeted online campaigns, phone calls, including automated phone calls, or other real time means.”

NHTSA is also proposing to improve the efficacy of recalls by requiring manufacturers to send additional notifications of defects or noncompliance with applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) if a second notification by the manufacturer does not result in an adequate number of motor vehicles or replacement equipment being returned for remedy.

The proposed changes are in accordance with the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) and the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act).

Comments must be received on or before October 31, 2016. You may submit comments to the Federal eRulemaking Portal using docket number NHTSA-2016-0001.

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