Whitney Nichels, MDOT MVA
Check to Protect: Governor Hogan Proclaims
Vehicle Safety Recalls Week in Maryland
MDOT MVA, National Safety Council Offering Safety Recall Checks March 2-6 in Glen Burnie, Beltsville
Glen Burnie, Md. (March 2, 2020) – About 53 million vehicles in the U.S. are subject to potentially life-threatening safety recalls, including more than 450,000 in Maryland. To bring awareness to this important issue and improve safety throughout the state, Governor Larry Hogan has proclaimed March 2-6, 2020, Vehicle Safety Recalls Week. In accordance with the proclamation, the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA), in partnership with the National Safety Council (NSC), is reminding motorists that it’s free to check for open recalls on their vehicles and free to have them repaired at a dealer.
During Vehicle Safety Recalls Week, the NSC has outreach teams at the MDOT MVA Glen Burnie and Beltsville branch offices from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily to run customers’ Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) to check for any open recalls. Customers can locate their VIN on the driver’s side dashboard, the inside driver’s door or on a registration or insurance card. Customers can also check open recalls at any time by contacting an authorized dealership or by using the VIN look-up tool found on the NSC website at www.checktoprotect.org.
Leading by example, MDOT MVA recently checked VIN information for every vehicle owned by the State of Maryland, and will address any outstanding recalls involving state-owned vehicles. MDOT MVA encourages other fleet owners to do the same.
In April 2018, MDOT MVA became the first state in the nation to launch a vehicle recall safety program to inform Maryland drivers of potentially life-saving recall notices. Vehicle safety recall information is printed on registration renewal notices, which are sent via mail and email about 60 days before a registration period ends. The notices encourage recipients to take appropriate action to remedy open safety recalls. The program, funded through a grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, has led to the repair of nearly 350,000 vehicle recalls.
“The most common vehicle recalls we are seeing in Maryland are related to airbags, which is a critical safety issue,” said MDOT MVA Administrator Chrissy Nizer. “Our goal is to reach zero deaths on Maryland roadways, and we are committed to using every resource possible to provide our customers with safety information. Each one of these remedied recalls is a risk that has been mitigated, leading to safer roadways for Maryland families.”
Manufacturers are responsible for notifying owners of open recalls. However, older vehicles are more likely to have changed ownership, making it difficult to inform new owners of recalls. That’s why the NSC formed Check to Protect, a national campaign to encourage drivers to check for and quickly address open recalls on their vehicles.
“Open recalls present a safety risk to drivers and all those sharing the roads with them,” said Kelly Nantel, vice president of communications and advocacy at NSC. “We applaud Governor Hogan for recognizing Vehicle Safety Recalls Week in Maryland and encourage state residents to use the opportunity to check their VIN. This is an important step on the road to zero deaths.”