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BMW to pay $3M fine for US recall issues

/ 08:22 AM February 11, 2012

CHICAGO—German carmaker BMW has agreed to pay $3 million in civil penalties for failing to report safety defects soon enough, US safety regulators said Friday.

Federal safety regulators launched an investigation in 2010 after noting a “troubling trend” in which “BMW appears to maintain a practice, by design or habit, in which it provides little information in its initial filings.”

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The initial reports were missing critical information such as plans to remedy the problem and it took BMW over 30 days on average to update the reports with required information, the safety regulator said.

A review of 16 BMW recalls issued in 2010 found “a number of instances” in which the automaker did not comply with federal law, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

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While BMW denies that it violated federal law, it agreed to make internal changes to its recall decision-making process in order to “ensure timely reporting to consumers and the federal government in the future.”

US law requires automakers to report defects within five days and promptly issue a recall to correct the problem.

“It’s critical to the safety of the driving public that defects and recalls are reported in short order,” David Strickland, head of the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, said in a statement.

“NHTSA expects all manufacturers to address automotive safety issues quickly and in a forthright manner.”

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TAGS: auto, BMW, company, fine, Germany, recall issues, safety, US
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