Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A is recalling about 4,170 2016 RAV4 SUVs for possible loss of vehicle stability control. According to a report on Edmunds.com, the recall also includes about 90 2016 Lexus RX 350 SUVs and about 12,400 2016 Lexus ES 350 sedans. The vehicles involved in this recall are equipped with a brake actuator assembly, which enables enhanced brake control functions such as the antilock braking system, traction control and vehicle stability control.
Increased Crash Risk
Toyota said in a statement that the component inside the actuator could have been damaged during the manufacturing process. This means that it might not work as intended and cause a loss of vehicle stability control, increasing the risk of a crash. When Edmunds asked Toyota if there are any injuries, accidents or fatalities linked to this recall, a spokeswoman for Toyota responded that they would not be providing specifics at this time. No date has been specified for this recall.
Electronic Stability Control is vital to making sure that the vehicle does not roll over when having to turn suddenly or when the driver loses control. Rollovers are an extremely dangerous situation for the vehicle passengers, and all vehicle manufacturers are responsible for making sure their passengers are as safe as possible from rollovers. Bisnar Chase has settled several cases against manufacturers who have been guilty of not adding stability control when they were able to. You can read about those cases here.
When the recall begins, Toyota and Lexus dealers will check the serial number of the brake actuator and replace actuators assembled during a specific production period. Owners of these vehicles would be well advised to wait for their official recall notice and then schedule a service appointment with their dealer. If you have an immediate concern, contact your dealer right away.
Importance of Stability Control
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) conducted studies, which found that electronic stability control technology reduced single vehicle crashes in passenger cars by 35 percent and by as much as 67 percent in SUVs. Also, this safety technology reduced fatal crashes by 30 percent in passenger cars and by 63 percent for SUVs. These numbers show that electronic stability control systems are critical features that reduce crash risk due to driver error or loss of control due to roadway or weather conditions. These systems are able to anticipate situations leading up to some crashes before they occur and automatically assist the driver avert the dangerous situation.
When these safety systems fail due to manufacturing or design defects, the consequences of such malfunctions can prove devastating to vehicle occupants. As auto product liability attorneys who represent severely injured victims of auto defects, we have to question why Toyota is not releasing information about injuries, crashes or fatalities relating to these vehicle defects. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of these or other auto defects, please contact a renowned auto defect law firm, which has the resources and will to conduct independent investigations to expose facts and hold negligent automakers accountable.