Rental Car Companies Agree not to Rent or Sell Recalled Vehicles

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The four largest rental car companies in the country have agreed to requests made by two senators who are pushing for legislation to prevent rental companies from renting or selling defective vehicles that have not yet been repaired. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Times, Senators Barbara Boxer and Charles Schumer announced the agreement Thursday with Hertz, Avis, Enterprise and Dollar Thrifty, the four most popular rental companies in the United States.

The companies have said they will support the law, which will for the first time put them under federal oversight on recalls. The push for this new law came from Cally Houck, the mother of Raechel, 24, and Jacqueline, 20, who were both killed in a fiery crash in 2004 while returning to the Bay Area after visiting their mother in Ojai.

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NHTSA Requires Changes to Black Box Data Standards

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Many recent model-year vehicles contain event data recorders (EDRs), known as “black boxes” that constantly track and capture key vehicle information that could prove to be very useful after a car accident.¬†However, the access to the data collected from the EDRs and its analysis has so far been problematic and ineffectual. This stems from the variations in the information being recorded by the gadgets that are made by different automakers, as well as an absence of a consistent retrieval system for the data. According to Consumer Reports, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ruled that all automakers must standardize the data collected by these black boxes. The ruling does not mandate black boxes in all vehicles, but it does affect what data is collected and how that data can be accessed.

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General Motors Recalls Chevrolet Impala Police Cars for Crash Risk

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General Motors has issued a recall for Chevrolet Impala police cars for a defective auto part that could potentially cause a crash. According to an NBC News report, the recall involves over 38,000 Impala police cars from model years 2008 through 2012. Officials say the police vehicles have a defective part in the front suspension that can crack. GM announced that the lower control arm in the suspension could fracture resulting in sudden changes in handling.

GM only discovered the issue after receiving several reports from police fleets. When the fracture occurs, the handling changes and a squeal or chirp becomes audible at low speeds. So far, there have been no known reports of crashes or injuries as a result of these auto defects. GM says that the civilian Impala has different suspension parts and will not be recalled.

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