Senators slam NHTSA after inspector general report

Senators slam NHTSA after inspector general report

An investigation of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by the DOT inspector general found much that was wrong with the agency, and senators in a Senate committee hearing harshly criticized NHTSA.

The inspectorês report said that NHTSA does not give –detailed guidance on what information manufacturers and consumers should report resulting in inconsistent data” that is not useful.

Another serious problem: NHTSAês –process for determining when to investigate potential safety defects is insufficient to prompt needed recalls.”

The criticism was bipartisan. –This audit report is one of the worst Iêve ever seen in terms of a government agency,” Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) said to NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind and DOT Inspector Calvin Scovell III. –This is about blatant, incompetent mismanagement.”

Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) said the report showed that the problem at NHTSA is not money, but mismanagement of resources. The Obama administration has asked Congress to triple NHTSAês defects budget and double its staff.

The report makes 17 recommendations to help NHTSA improve its auto safety investigations. Rosekind told senators the agency has taken 44 actions to address problems at the agency, including 10 that directly deal with the reportês criticisms.

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