Toyota Motor Corp. is recalling 6.5 million vehicles globally for a defective power window switch that can overheat, melt and lead to fires.
According to an NBC News report, one injury was reported in the United States, involving a person who suffered a burn injury.
Toyota has also received 11 reports of cases in which the switch or part of the car door burned, seven of those incidents in North America.
This recall includes 2.7 million vehicles in North America and several popular brands including Camry, Corolla, Yaris, RAV4, Highlander and Tundra.
Faulty Switches Pose Fire Risks
The report states the defect was caused by grease that was sprayed on improperly during the manufacturing of electrical contact modules.
Debris or moisture could enter the module and that could lead to a short circuit. Toyota has promised to be quicker with recalls after its massive recall over sudden acceleration in 2009.
That recall involved sticky gas pedals, defective brakes and faulty floor mats. The scandal resulted in huge government fines for Toyota. Other automakers who have been slapped with fines recently for delayed recalls include General Motors and Takata.
Volkswagen, which has been embroiled in a scandal over rigged emissions tests, potentially faces civil and criminal penalties.
This recall involves vehicles that can result in fires due to faulty power window switches. Car fires can result in catastrophic burn injuries or even fatalities. One of the incidents reported in the United States involved a man whose hand was burned. Severe burn injuries often require extensive treatment and rehabilitation.
Victims in addition to skin damage may also suffer nerve and tissue damage. They may need costly and painful treatments such as skin graft surgeries, and may still not completely recover. In addition, burn injury victims also suffer permanent scarring and disfigurement.
Auto Product Liability Issues
If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective automobile, it is important that you preserve the vehicle in its current state, unaltered, so an expert can thoroughly examine it for defects, malfunctions and design flaws.
Injured victims can seek compensation from the automaker for damages including medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, rehabilitation, cost of surgery, pain and suffering and emotional distress.
An experienced auto product liability lawyer will be able to better advice injured victims and their families regarding their legal rights and options.