The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently launched a new public awareness campaign called “Safe Cars Save Lives” that urges consumers to check for open recalls at least twice a year and to get their vehicles fixed as soon as parts are available. Last year, there were close to 900 recalls affecting 51 million vehicles nationwide. Every year, on average, 25 percent of recalled vehicles are left unrepaired.
Consumers are urged to get into the habit of checking their vehicle identification number (VIN) twice a year at a minimum using NHTSA’s free VIN look up tool. To remember to check, NHTSA suggests timing it with day light savings – every November when setting clocks back and every March when setting clocks forward. If there is an open recall, the safety agency advises owners to contact their local dealer to schedule an appointment and bring their vehicle in for repair as soon as possible.