By Ryan Beene, Crain News Service
WASHINGTON (April 22, 2015) — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is poised to take action in the coming weeks on two long-running safety recalls that it views as progressing too slowly, the agency's top official said.
NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said April 21 that two working groups at the agency have developed a “range of options” for next steps the agency can take on the recall of 1.56 million older Jeep SUVs for fuel tanks that could rupture in a crash, and the widespread Takata Corp. airbag inflator recalls, which have affected some 25 million vehicles worldwide since 2008.
“The most important thing was to be able to generate a range of options for us to kind of decide where we want to address these issues in a strategic but timely way,” Mr. Rosekind said. “For both [the Takata and Jeep recalls], I think we're one or two weeks away from actually having some concrete things to start taking action on.”
Mr. Rosekind declined to specify the options on the table, but the agency has been dissatisfied with the overall pace of repairs under the recalls. Bloomberg News reported earlier this month that the agency may consider reopening an investigation into the Jeep recalls after reviewing how many of the Jeeps were repaired in the first quarter. NHTSA has also been mulling an order to speed up the pace of repairs under the Takata recalls.