Toyota Motor Corporation announced that they are conducting a safety recall on more than 6.5 million vehicles worldwide. The recall was prompted by consumer complaints about the driver’s side Power Window Master Switch catching fire. The automaker received 11 reports of burned door trims. The only report of physical harm came from a U.S. customer that suffered from a burn on the hand. Toyota stated they are not aware of any accidents resulting from any defective switches. The malfunction is linked to neglect during the manufacturing process; the switches did not receive enough lubricating grease. In some situations the lack of grease allows debris to accumulate at electrical points, triggering a short circuit that can result in overheating and melting.
An email from the automaker to Bloomberg Business said that about 2.7 million of the recalled vehicles are in North America, 1.2 million in Europe, and 600,000 in Japan. The recall exceeds more than half a year of Toyota’s vehicle production.
Toyota automakers are under pressure to speed up their recall process after coming under fire for time lags between learning about potential flaws and initiating recalls. This pressure is justified by past experience from Toyota’s slow recall of several vehicle models that would unintentionally accelerate. Kayo Doi, a spokeswoman for Tokai Rika Co., stated the company had supplied the parts involved in the recall. According to a filing with the Tokyo Stock Exchange, Tokai Rika will have a charge of 14.5 billion yen ($121 million) due to this recall.
If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident involving a recalled vehicle, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.