Honda has agreed to pay two separate $35 million fines to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for under-reporting death and injury claims.
The first fine is the result of Honda failing to notify NHTSA of 1,729 claims of injury or death that took place in its vehicles. The second fine is for Honda’s failure to report certain warranty claims and claims under customer satisfaction campaigns through the same time period.
Federal law requires all automakers to submit any potential safety concerns to NHTSA.
Along with the fines, Honda has agreed to comply with NHTSA oversight which will make sure that Honda develops new written procedures for compliance with early warning report procedures, train certain personnel at least every year and complete two third-party audits of the automaker’s compliance with its reporting obligations.
The Japanese brand cites three key areas where its reporting system failed: Data entry errors, coding errors and narrow regulatory interpretation. Honda says that it has already made a number of steps to correct these issues including correcting the computer programming issue, changing policies, implementing new training, enhancing oversight and reprogramming warranty and property claims information.
“Today’s announcement sends a very clear message to the entire industry that manufacturers have responsibility for the complete and timely reporting of this critical safety information,” said NHTSA Administrator Dr. Mark Rosekind. “The actions we are requiring will push Honda to significantly raise the bar on the effectiveness of its EWR reporting program. Our ongoing oversight will ensure compliance and determine if there is cause for additional actions.”
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