You have read or heard about massive recalls that involve automobiles and automobile parts. There is a legal reason why the recalls receive national publicity.
Passed by Congress in 1966, the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act not only created the motor vehicle recall process, the landmark piece of legislation also set the standard for protecting consumers against automaker negligence. The act represented the first mandatory federal safety standards established for motor vehicles manufactured within the United States. Many automotive industry analysts attribute the passage of the act to the significant decline in the incidence of motor vehicle accidents
Addressing Public Health Concerns
The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 paved the way for subsequent legislation that protects consumers against specific health concerns. Drunk driving prevention statutes at the state level came about because of federally issued mandates derived from the passage of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act. The threat of withholding federal funds for road and highway construction has forced states to issue tough laws that create stricter law enforcement and increase the minimum age for drinking alcohol. Tough drunk driving laws also provide consumers with a legal means to recover monetary damages from the person or business responsible for a drunk driving accident.
Mandatory Passenger Protection Systems
Another impact made by the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act involves the development of passenger protection systems. By using federal funds as motivation, the United States government has prompted states to pass tough safety belt laws that punish drivers and passengers for not wearing the vehicle safety restraint. Numerous lawsuits have stemmed from vehicle safety restraints that do not deploy quickly enough to protect drivers and passengers. Child safety and booster seats also fall under the legal domain of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act. The result of the various motor vehicle safety initiatives and prosecution of parties that fail to follow the federally issued mandates under the act has been a dramatic decrease in the number of child fatalities.
Legacy of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act
The recognition by the United States government for the need to protect consumers against the negligence of automakers prompted the passage of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Since the passage of the highly influential act, several agencies have formed to enforce automaker compliance with federally mandated motor vehicle safety regulations. The National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) formed by the United States Department of Transportation is a direct result of the passage of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act. NHTSA initiatives include the highly publicized “Buckle Up America” week that promotes the use of motor vehicle safety restraints. Established in 1992, the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control has provided research data to back the efforts of policymakers to enact and enforce laws that enhance motor vehicle safety. Signed by President Clinton on November 1, 2000, the TREAD Act requires child seat restraint manufacturers to file early warning reports every quarter in response to receiving information of fatalities caused by defective child seat restraints.
Consumers that suffer injuries caused by automobile and automobile part manufacturer negligence have the legal right to seek monetary rewards by filing lawsuits. Before you take the big legal step, contact a licensed attorney that specializes in litigating motor vehicle-related injury and fatality cases. After a free initial consultation, you should have a much better idea on the how the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act can help you win a motor vehicle liability lawsuit.