Keyless Cars Carry a Significant Risk of Carbon Monoxide Exposure
In the last few years, dozens of people have died in accidents involving carbon monoxide exposure. A recent report from the New York Times found that at least 28 people have died in accidents caused by carbon monoxide poisoning after failing to shut off their vehicles. At least 45 others have been injured in these types of accidents during the same span of time.
Keyless cars, which allow drivers holding the electronic key fob to activate the cars at the push of a button, make it easy for a driver to walk away without realizing the engine is still running. In a confined space, this can turn deadly.
If you or a loved one has been injured in this or any other form of car accident, contact the attorneys of the Khalidi Law Firm. With over 20 years of experience, we have the knowledge to help you through this time. Give us a call to set up a free consultation today.
Campaign to Fix the Problem
Since at least seven years ago, there have been attempts to fix the problem with keyless cars. At that time, the Society of Automotive Engineers campaigned for requirements to include warning signals (like beeps and other noises) to warn drivers if they were inadvertently leaving their cars on.
A couple of years later, the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) called for a law that would make warnings mandatory. The auto industry fought the rule back, and up to this point there is no official requirement that warnings be made available.
In 2015, there was a class action lawsuit claiming that 13 deaths had been linked to carbon monoxide poisoning in keyless cars. The case was dismissed in 2016.
Features Are Being Introduced to Save Lives
While there isn’t an official rule requiring auto manufacturers to include warnings for drivers, some brands have already started including this customer safety feature. Other carmakers have stalled the process and seem unwilling to make any changes without a new law being passed.
Some carmakers, particularly Toyota and Lexus, have stubbornly avoided making any changes. Toyota told the New York Times that its keyless ignition “meets or exceeds all relevant federal safety standards.” While this may be true, it’s also true that Toyota vehicles were involved in almost half of the accidental carbon monoxide deaths.
What’s next for keyless ignition? The NHTSA is still working on creating a new rule that would require auto manufacturers to install safety features in their vehicles. If this happens, carmakers like Toyota would be incentivized to solve the problem and save lives.
Have You Been Involved in a Motor Vehicle Accident?
At The Khalidi Law Firm, PLLC, we offer representation for clients who have been injured in car accidents and pedestrian accidents. Ultimately, our goal is to get you the recovery you may deserve for your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more. If you or a loved one has been involved in such an accident, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with us today.