Report: VW Failed To Disclose One Death, Three Injuries To Federal Regulator Database

Last month it was reported that Volkswagen may have skirted rules that require car manufacturers to report death and injury claims to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A new analysis of the regulator’s database and lawsuits filed against the company show it failed to report at least one death and three injuries involving its vehicles. 

Bloomberg, citing lawsuits filed against VW over the last decade, found several instances in which the car company underreported or failed to report injuries or deaths to federal regulators, who use the figures to spot defects and issues with vehicles.

According to a review of NHTSA’s database and 13 random lawsuits filed against VW, the company only reported nine of the legal actions to regulators.

Four other lawsuits, filed in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2014, were never reported, according to Bloomberg and financial adviser Stout Risius Ross’ analysis.

Under federal law, legal complaints against automakers must be reported to NHTSA within 30 days of the end of the quarter in which the carmaker is notified of the complaint.

The complaints included a January 2008 fatal accident involving a 2000 Beetle in Portland, OR. During the accident, the vehicle’s side airbags were alleged to have failed to deploy. VW denied the incident included a defect and the case was dismissed.

Likewise, two of the injury lawsuits filed in Texas were settled, with the company once again denying allegations of defects.

The most recent case, filed in 2014 in Pennsylvania, is still pending. However, VW once again denies the injuries suffered from the accident were a result of a defect.

Volkswagen Failed to Report Fatal Incident to Regulator [Bloomberg]

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