DETROIT – Starting next summer, U.S. consumers will be able to search a giant database to find out if their cars or motorcycles have been recalled and if the vehicles have been fixed.
Only about 70 percent of recalled vehicles are taken to dealers for repairs, leaving thousands of cars on the road with potentially critical safety flaws. The database will let car owners search for free to see if they missed a recall notice, and used car shoppers will be able to see if all recall work has been done on cars they want to buy.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the agency that regulates auto safety, said Wednesday that it will require major auto and motorcycle makers to give customers online access to data so it can be searched by vehicle identification number.
The searches will give people “peace of mind knowing that the vehicle they own, or that they are thinking of buying, is safe,” NHTSA Administrator David Strickland said in a statement.