US fines Toyota $17.4 million for delays in safety reports
The US Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that Toyota has agreed to pay USD 17.35 million, the maximum fine allowable under the law, in response to the agency's assertion that the Japanese automaker "failed to report a safety defect to the federal government in a timely manner."
"This action represents the single highest civil penalty amount ever paid to NHTSA for violations stemming from a recall," the US agency that monitors vehicle safety said in a statement.
"Safety is our highest priority," said US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.
"With today's announcement, I expect Toyota to rigorously reinforce its commitment to adhering to United States safety regulations."
Federal law requires all auto manufacturers to notify NHTSA within five business days of determining that a safety defect exists or that the vehicle is not in compliance with federal motor vehicle safety standards and to promptly conduct a recall.
"It's critical to the safety of the driving public that manufacturers report safety defects in a timely manner," said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland.
In early 2012, NHTSA officials began noticing a trend in floor mat pedal entrapment in 2010 Lexus RX sports utility vehicles. In June, Toyota advised NHTSA that it would conduct a recall of 154,036 Model Year 2010 Lexus RX 350 and Model Year 2010 RX 450h vehicles to address
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