Fiat Chrysler recall failings detailed by regulators, report says
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA (Reuters) -- U.S. vehicle safety regulators have "tentatively concluded" that Fiat-Chrysler Cars NV didn't sufficiently repair security flaws in a timely way, notify automobile owners of recalls or keep federal authorities notified about on-going problems, according to the official document seen by Reuters on Wednesday.
The record, the official draft of a notice to be printed in the Federal Register, includes the most powerfully worded language to day by regulators in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and enlarges from 20 to 22 the amount of recalls that NHTSA means to scrutinize in a community hearing on July 2.
The auto-maker could encounter more than $700 million in fines and be necessary to buy-back or substitute automobiles if regulators discover that it failed in its authorized recall duties.
NHTSA and FCA failed to reply to queries seeking comment.
All informed, the recalls call for more than 1 1 million automobiles and trucks, including 1.5 million Jeep Liberty and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs recalled in June 2013 to decrease the threat of fire in rear end collisions. By April 30, 2015, NHTSA stated FCA had finished repairs on only 320,000 of the autos, or 2 1%.
The notice stated NHTSA discovered that FCA did not notify owners about flaws in 2 previously unreported instances. In one situation, the bureau said, FCA "failed to notify owners for more than five months" in regards to the threat that air-bag inflators could rupture.
People hearing, and an accompanying specific order issued to the auto-maker on May 18, are part of an escalating regulatory conflict between FCA as well as the Obama management.
FCA said it could join forces, but included in a June 4 reply to NHTSA's specific order that it saw no cause to to put up a community hearing.
The newest notice offered extra particulars to to aid NHTSA's competition that FCA failed to fulfill those responsibilities.
The FCA recalls ear-marked for inspection call for an assortment of Chrysler models that date back to 1993, including Dodge Ram pick-ups, and Chrysler Town and Country mini-vans.
As one illustration of what it stated was FCA's failure to repair vehicle defects in an acceptable time, NHTSA mentioned some three recalls from 2013, including a million Dodge Ram trucks with possibly flawed tie rods. The bureau said FCA cannot make enough repair components and that a number of the spare parts neglected after fixes were made.
"Only at that time, a yr along with a half subsequent to the recall notices were filed, a lot of the car stay un-repaired," NHTSA stated.
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