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NHTSA changes early warning rules

Aug. 20, 2013

In a lengthy final rule published in the August 20 Federal Register, NHTSA is amending provisions of the early warning reporting (EWR) rule and the regulations governing motor vehicle and equipment safety recalls.

The EWR rule will now require light vehicle manufacturers to specify the vehicle type and the fuel and/or propulsion system type in their reports and add new component categories of stability control systems for light vehicles, buses, emergency vehicles, and medium-heavy vehicle manufacturers, It also addresses forward collision avoidance, lane departure prevention, and backover prevention for light vehicle manufacturers.

These amendments will also require light vehicle manufacturers to segregate their service brake EWR data into two new component categories. In addition, NHTSA will require motor vehicle manufacturers to report their annual list of substantially similar vehicles via the Internet.

NHTSA also is implementing requirements that will increase the amount of recall data posted on the Internet.  Requirements include a VIN-based recalls lookup tool on the manufacturer’s website or elsewhere on the Internet.  Other requirements include the submission of recalls reports and  information via the Internet. The final rule, published in the August 20 Federal Register, modifies requirements for owner notification letters and envelopes that must be issued to owners and purchasers of recalled vehicles and equipment.