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http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/a-se...breakdowns-when-it-comes-to-recalls-1.2161666


DETROIT -- When it comes to making and selling cars, the auto industry thinks and acts globally: There is near-seamless co-ordination between parts suppliers, factories and dealerships.
But when an unsafe car needs to be recalled, that global co-ordination breaks down -- in part because governments do not demand it. There are no international standards for determining what's unsafe and should be recalled, or how car owners should be notified. The consequences can sometimes be deadly.
Six years ago, Honda began recalling driver's side air bags in the U.S. The air bags, made by Japanese supplier Takata Corp. at a now-shuttered plant in Georgia, can inflate with too much force, spewing shrapnel into the vehicle. But it wasn't until November of this year -- after the death of a driver in Malaysia -- that Honda recalled driver's side air bags in small cars sold in Europe and Asia, even though the air bags were made at the same time in the same Georgia factory.
Governments are the safety watchdogs, but regulations vary widely and there's little co-operation between nations. Automakers, for the most part, get to decide when and where their cars will be fixed.
"We've witnessed recalls occurring in one part of the world while the same defects go unremedied in others, sometimes for years," said Sean Kane, a safety advocate and president of Safety Research and Strategies. "That should not happen."
CARS ARE GLOBAL
Cars and car parts are now made to be sold and used almost anywhere in the world.
The compact Ford Focus is designed to be sold globally, with only minor tweaks to satisfy local tastes and regulations. It's made in nine different factories.
Almost all the major automakers use air bags from Takata, which has 56 plants in 20 countries. The Japanese company makes around 22 per cent of the world's air bags, according to Valient Automotive Market Research.
Sharing common parts saves money, but some experts question whether the rush to go global compromised safety. Auto analyst and engineer Tadashi Tateuchi says he believes that's what happened with Takata and Honda, which is Takata's biggest customer.
Honda responds that the air bags sold in the U.S. were different, and more advanced, than those involved in the Malaysia crash. Even though they both ruptured, determining the underlying cause took time.
THE SAFETY GAMUT
Despite decades of talk, at the United Nations and elsewhere, little progress has been made getting governments to harmonize safety standards.
In Europe and Japan, cars are rigorously tested before they go on sale. In the U.S., automakers self-certify and cars are tested only after they go on sale. In Mexico and India, cars don't have to meet any government safety standards at all.
Likewise, countries differ on how to treat a problem. The U.S. requires automakers to report a safety defect within five days of its discovery, even if the cause hasn't been determined. Other countries, like Colombia, want automakers to have a fix in place before they report a recall.
John Krafcik, the president of auto buying site TrueCar.com and Hyundai's former U.S. chief, says there's also discrepancy in what's considered a safety defect.
The lack of a cohesive system contributes to huge disparities. In 2013, there were 714 vehicle recalls issued in the U.S., where 28 million cars, trucks and motorcycles were called back due to safety issues. That outpaced the rest of the world. In Europe, which has around the same number of cars on the road as the U.S., there were 110 recalls. In Japan there were 303. China had 130.
WHAT AUTOMAKERS WANT
Some auto executives say global standards would allow them to work from one playbook when designing cars. But low or nonexistent standards also save them money. Nissan didn't even include air bags in the $5,000 Datsun Go it now sells in India and South Africa.
"We are starting with a world that is uneven in the distribution of safety," says Adrian Lund, the president of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, an insurance-funded group that crash tests U.S. cars.
Nissan says the Go meets local safety standards and has other features like better brakes to help drivers avoid accidents.
Automakers can also save money by limiting or delaying recalls.
Ten years ago, the U.S. government fined Toyota $16 million for delaying a recall of 4Runner SUVs with defective steering rods in the U.S. The defect was linked to three fatal crashes here.
This summer, two years after a recall in Europe, General Motors recalled the Aveo in the U.S. because corrosion was wearing down the brakes. Meanwhile, Ford recalled SUVs with 1.6-litre EcoBoost engines in the U.S. two years ago because of a fire risk. They have yet to be recalled in Europe and Brazil.
WHAT MIGHT WORK


Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/a-se...n-it-comes-to-recalls-1.2161666#ixzz3MrA2Nnaf
 

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there are so many industries and processes that would be improved and/or be cheaper if standardized. Think of the medical or even car insurance industries. Each state has it's own set of rules and regulations, so it's hard for a company to keep track of them all. They have to hire more people, tracking software, etc. If there were just one set of standards is suspect there could be quite a bit of savings.
 

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I personally think cars (and other consumer goods) would be safer if a GLOBAL standard was chosen OR existing ones where harmonized
but the Takata case and others IMHO show a NEED to standardize recall procedures + notification procedures
again why are southern cars in "humid" climates to be recalled but a arbitrary line is drawn on a map assuming NO cars cross it in there life time OR how about cars up north parked in heated garages and have snow melt caused humidity all winter?
a can agree that rolling out in "high risk" areas first and moving to lower risk zones
 

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Whilst the concept of a global standard is excellent, the processes of operating it would take away it's benefits.

Can you imagine the time/difficulty in getting agreement for any initial global standard - and making changes as circumstances change would be impossible. Standards can't be set just on the basis of a majority vote, it needs almost complete consensus otherwise dissenting countries will simply withdraw and do their own thing.

With widespread use of the internet it can be very disturbing to find out that a vehicle in one part of the world is subject to recall but an apparently similar vehicle elsewhere isn't - that may be justified by a different part being used in some markets, or as can happen an assembly fault at one plant not affecting the identical model built elsewhere.

Local conditions, including climatic variations, can make a difference to the severity of a fault which is why many recalls are subject to an inspection to determine if the vehicle is affected.

Local legislation and legal practices will cause variations in recalls because manufacturers risk being sued in one place but not in another.

IMO the commercial cost of non-standardisation should remain the prime mover in bringing closer standardisation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I can buy a stick of RAM from China for 1/2 the price of 1 from Canada.

I couldn't buy a Pontiac GTO in Canada, at any price.

The difference is, the stick of RAM won't kill me.

this statement might say it all

"In Europe and Japan, cars are rigorously tested before they go on sale. In the U.S., automakers self-certify and cars are tested only after they go on sale. In Mexico and India, cars don't have to meet any government safety standards at all."

So what about Parts?
 

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I can buy a stick of RAM from China for 1/2 the price of 1 from Canada.

I couldn't buy a Pontiac GTO in Canada, at any price.

The difference is, the stick of RAM won't kill me.

this statement might say it all

"In Europe and Japan, cars are rigorously tested before they go on sale. In the U.S., automakers self-certify and cars are tested only after they go on sale. In Mexico and India, cars don't have to meet any government safety standards at all."

So what about Parts?
parts for european standards have to meet the ECE code standard and are marked with a "E" in a circle an a number to denote the testing country
in the USA DOT standards have to be met so parts can be labeled with a "DOT" number and that number denotes what standards the part is supposed to be built to but are manufacturer tested
 

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I can buy a stick of RAM from China for 1/2 the price of 1 from Canada.

I couldn't buy a Pontiac GTO in Canada, at any price.

The difference is, the stick of RAM won't kill me.

this statement might say it all

"In Europe and Japan, cars are rigorously tested before they go on sale. In the U.S., automakers self-certify and cars are tested only after they go on sale. In Mexico and India, cars don't have to meet any government safety standards at all."

So what about Parts?
It would appear that Euro and Japanese legislatures are not as well-bribed as those in the US federal government. Self-regulate? That is hilarious.

I just watched a special on Boeing. Since FOX is out on dish, I watched Al Jazeera which though it has its limitations is still more a news outfit than NBC etc.
The clearly conflicted-of-interest situation whereby "regulators" can retire and take up fat fat jobs with those they supposedly regulated for decades, is such a blatantly mob-like criminal enterprise that if the US government EVER fixes that one little problem, it will signal A New Day In America. :eek:
I won't be holding my breath.

What a stick of Ram? Is that like a crash of Rhinos? A flange of baboons?

http://www.thealmightyguru.com/Pointless/AnimalGroups.html
 
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A stick of RAM for your computer.

USA self regulating might be why there are so many Recalls.
Ah!

I love the Congressional hearings, such as the recent berating of the NFL and before that GM for the delayed recalls.

Agent Orange, anyone? He without sin, cast the first stone. The feds are so f'd up, how they ever get any regs straight is a source of constant amazement for me.
 

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there are so many industries and processes that would be improved and/or be cheaper if standardized. Think of the medical or even car insurance industries. Each state has it's own set of rules and regulations, so it's hard for a company to keep track of them all. They have to hire more people, tracking software, etc. If there were just one set of standards is suspect there could be quite a bit of savings.
the world hasn't yet managed to standardise on metrics - even the poms still use mph for warning signs so good luck with getting it for safety related items. The UN does have some standards - i think speedometers is one. gee we can't even standardise the spelling of standardise!
 

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the world hasn't yet managed to standardise on metrics - even the poms still use mph for warning signs so good luck with getting it for safety related items. The UN does have some standards - i think speedometers is one. gee we can't even standardise the spelling of standardise!
Standardise on metrics? Give us chance we haven't got the Americans to standardise on Imperial yet! They use short tons/long tons and small gallons.

But seriously, the genuine ease with which the UK manages a mixed Imperial/metric system as part of an otherwise totally integrated metric EU means that there's simply no incentive to bear the cost of changing to fully metric when there's no tangible benefit - judging by accident statistics it wouldn't make UK roads any safer.

As far as car safety goes, getting the Chinese to adopt/enforce any safety standards would be a good start - get them to adopt either US standards or EU standards would be a huge step forward - then the authorities could look at closing the gap between US and EU standards, which are different but not that far apart, after all US cars are sold in Europe and European cars are sold in the US with only minor modifications.
 

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Speaking of the standardize on metrics issue, it seems to me that some time ago it was announced that the US was headed that direction. Considering how far it has progressed, I see this auto industry standardization to be a long shot at best. I think the US when compared to the rest as far as safety, does a pretty good job even if a little muddled once in a while. That would be at the industry level not the gov't level.
 
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