An investigation was launched by U.S. vehicle safety officials earlier this year regarding complaints they've garnered from drivers of Fiat Chrysler Ram SUVs and pickup trucks. The car manufacturer had been receiving an overwhelming amount of claims that their vehicles are rolling away and crashing after being parked. Recently, they've decided to recall approximately 1.1 million cars due to the rapidly increasing accident rates involving their cars. Investigators credit Fiat Chrysler's cars malfunctions as the reason for the death of beloved Star Trek star Anton Yelchin.
According to the Los Angeles Coroner's Office, actor Anton Yelchin died in a freak accident involving a roll away vehicle this year at his Los Angeles home.
He had been planning on attending a rehearsal with some acquaintances when he was fatally hit by his 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee. His coworkers, whom had become worried when he didn't show up, decided to visit his home the next day. Unfortunately, when they got there they discovered the actor's body pinned between his brick mailbox and security fence. Apparently Yelchin's car had rolled backwards down his steep driveway and smashed him, killing him instantly. The actor's autopsy revealed that he died of blunt traumatic asphyxia, which was reassurance that he didn't feel much pain upon being struck. However, his parents opted to taking legal recourse by suing Fiat Chrysler for negligence and liability claims in California. It turns out his vehicle was one of the numerous Jeep Cherokee's that the manufacturer recently recalled. Similar situations prior to Yelchin's accident have occurred.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration compiled alarming data concluding that Dodge Chargers, Chrysler 300 sedans and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs have been linked to 68 injuries, 266 crashes and 308 reports of property damage so far. The manufacturer's recall consisted of downloading new software in 53% of the vehicles that automatically shifts them to park.
U.S. regulators and the NHTSA have narrowed the error in these vehicles down to the confusing rotary transmission design shifter, resulting in drivers choosing the wrong shifts while parking. Fiat Chrysler has now altered the design of the shifter in accordance to the standard mechanical shifter.
The senior analyst at the Autotrader.com online vehicle marketplace, Michelle Krebs, emphasized that car manufacturers' attempts to change the traditional gear shift has failed, leaving drivers to be befuddled behind the wheel.
“We need to educate consumers as to how it works, and, if you're going to reinvent something that people are very familiar with, you'd better make sure it works perfectly,” Krebs said.
If you have experienced any injuries as the result of the negligence of a company or organization, you may be eligible for compensation. The Brod Law Firm is dedicated to fighting for our clients to get the best results possible. Contact them online or call 888-435-7946 for a free consultation. We serve all of the state of Pennsylvania from our offices in Philadelphia, Reading and Bala Cynwyd.
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