The U.S. Department of Transportation said Thursday it is fining Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV $70 million for failing to report vehicle crash deaths and injuries since 2003.
The Italian-American automaker is the latest automaker to be fined for failing to comply with a 2000 federal law that requires automakers to disclose reports of deaths and injuries to help safety officials detect defect trends earlier.
Fiat Chrysler said it would pay the fine and pledged to change procedures to ensure proper reporting. It is also commissioning a third-party audit to ensure it is complying with the law and determine the full extent of the reporting failures.
The automaker admitted in September it had failed to provide data including reports of deaths and injuries, warranty claims, consumer complaints and field reports of safety issues.
“We need FCA and other automakers to move toward a stronger, more proactive safety culture, and when they fall short, we will continue to exercise our enforcement authority to set them on the right path,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
Fiat Chrysler said in a statement it “accepts these penalties and is revising its processes to ensure regulatory compliance” The automaker added it “is confident that it identified and addressed all issues that arose during the relevant time period, using alternate data sources.”
In July, Fiat Chrysler agreed to a $105 million settlement, including a $70 million, for mishandling nearly two dozen recall campaigns covering 11 million vehicles.