Daimler Trucks faces hefty fines if it doesn’t improve safety measures.
On Thursday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced fines against Daimler Trucks for failing to quickly recall its vehicles. Here in the U.S., Daimler AG oversees the Freightliner and Western Star brands, and also sells Mercedes-Benz commercial trucks in overseas markets. The “consent order”, as it’s called, requires Daimler Trucks to improve its safety measures over the next two to three years.
“Safety is NHTSA’s top priority”, Deputy Administrator James Owens said. “It’s critical that manufacturers appropriately recognize the urgency of their safety recall responsibilities and provide timely and candid information to the agency about all safety issues.” To that end, the NHTSA requires Daimler to develop written procedures and conduct training for employees who handle recalls and the reporting process.
The NHTSA’s total civil penalty against the automaker stands at $30 million. However, that sum figure breaks down into a few different factors. Daimler’s upfront fine is $10 million. As part of the agreement, the NHTSA requires the company to spend a further $5 million on projects to enhance safety. If Daimler fails to comply, it faces another $15 million deferred penalty.
This news follows another penalty against Daimler AG back in December 2019. In that order, Mercedes-Benz paid $20 million to the NHTSA over its handling of recalls. Again, the NHTSA said the company failed to notify owners in a timely manner, submit all the necessary reports and did not launch two recalls quickly enough.