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The Grow America Act seeks to enhance safety on the roads

Purchasing and owning a vehicle, or multiple vehicles, is common for residents across Montana. And while these are commonly purchased goods, they include several risks beyond the obvious ones associated with traveling on the roadways. In some cases, the improper functioning of an automobile is out of the hands of the driver. Defective auto parts present much vulnerability on the roadways and pose several potential threats to travelers on the roadway.

In order to address these dangers and reduce these threats to the health and well-being of driver across the nation, the Grow America Act included provisions that could enhance safety. Automobile defects generate hundreds of investigations each year; however, delays in disclosing these known or discovered defect also delays the initiation of recalls. This situation costs many lives each year.

This Act increases the budget, so defects are found sooner. This also strengthens the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's ability to conduct investigations on automobile that are suspected to have defects. The Grow America Act also establishes harsher penalties for manufacturers that refuse to address automobile defects, dangerous vehicles or defective auto parts.

When defects are discovered, the Act requires that manufacturers immediately cease the sale of these vehicles until these defects are repaired. This also extends to rental car companies and used car dealers, requiring them to participate in recalls of defective or unsafe vehicles. Lastly, the Act improves both vehicle and tire recall efforts by ensuring the public is better informed of these defects. This provision also provides more time for consumer to address defects to tires.

While this Act addresses automobile defects, this unfortunately does not prevent all auto defects from harming consumers. An injured consumer should understand the person's rights following an accident caused by a defective vehicle or auto part. An investigation could help determine if a negligent manufacture is at fault. A products liability suit could help hold them responsible for the damages and losses caused by the incident.

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, "GROW AMERICA: Enhancing Safety," accessed Nov. 16, 2015

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