Preventing Rental Car Companies From Renting Recalled Vehicles

Author: Michael Gluck

In 2010, a Santa Cruz California mother, Cathy Houck learned that Enterprise-Rent-A-Car had no policy about not renting cars that were subject to federal safety recall. A month prior to the accident that killed her two daughters, Enterprise had received a federal safety recall on the Chrysler P.T. Cruiser for steering fluid leaks that caused fires. When the daughters picked up their rental car, the agent informed them they had an upgrade but made no mention of the car’s potential hazard.

An ABC News broadcast reported the details of the crash caused by the steering fluid leak and interviewed the parents. The girls’ parents rejected a $3 million settlement offer and pursued a lengthy trial because they wanted to ensure no other people were subjected to similar rental car hazards. The jury found in their favor and awarded $15 million in damages.

Proposed law to stop rental of recalled cars prior to repair

However, from the mother’s perspective, the battle is not over. Rental car companies continue to have no policy that stops them from renting cars subject to safety recalls. Senator Boxer of California and Senator Schumer of New York recently proposed a law that would prevent rental car agencies from renting cars subject to federal safety recalls prior to repairs.

Another recent ABC News report stated that Cathy Houck had circulated a petition and collected more than 100,000 signatures of people requesting that Enterprise Rent-A-Car cease its lobbying opposition to the new proposed law. Subsequently, a public relations person at Enterprise announced the company’s change in stance.

If you or a loved one is seriously injured in a car accident, seek experienced legal guidance and learn about your options. Rosenberg and Gluck is a long established New York personal injury law firm with extensive experience representing clients in Long Island car accidents.