In August, a lawsuit was filed in a Los Angeles federal court alleging that automakers should have recalled millions of vehicles with keyless ignitions because the cars do not shut off automatically, putting occupants at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning.
According to ABC News, the lawsuit was filed on behalf of keyless car drivers, saying that there have been at least 13 deaths linked to the issue. As the lawsuit says, “[D]rivers mistakenly believe that removing the Keyless Fob from the vehicle turns off the engine.”
Keyless ignitions work by allowing drivers to start their engines without inserting a device into a switch—in most models, there are start/stop buttons. To start a vehicle, a key only has to be present in a car.
The lawsuit names Toyota, Ford, Nissan, Honda, GM, BMW, Volkswagen, Bentley, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai and Kia as defendants. It says the manufactures have known about the risks of the technology for a while, as drivers have to press a button to turn off a car.
The lawsuit claims the manufacturers sold keyless fobs “without instituting adequate safeguards, warnings, or other safety features.” Complaints dating back to 2007 have been filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over issues with the keyless feature, according to ABC News.
Due to the complaints, some manufacturers began installing technology in vehicles that automatically turns cars off in later models. However, recalls relating to keyless features were never issued.
The lawsuit seeks class action status. According to ABC News, some individual lawsuits have been filed previously relating to the issue, with them being settled out of court.
If a Vehicle Defect Has Injured You or Killed Your Loved One, Speak to our Middlesex County Injury Lawyers
Continue to follow our blog, as we will update this story when more news comes out. Auto manufacturers have a duty to make sure their vehicles are safe and that all parts function properly prior to placing them in the marketplace.
At least 13 deaths relating to an auto part is unacceptable. If you have been injured or your loved one has been killed in a vehicle that was recalled or that experienced defects, speak to our Middlesex County injury lawyers.
Spevack Law Firm – Middlesex County Injury Attorneys