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If You Have a Car with a Keyless Ignition, You Need to Read This

Posted on - Saturday, October 24, 2015 under Dangerous Drugs & Products

The price of convenience shouldn’t be an increased risk of death. However, that is exactly what has happened with keyless car ignitions.

The deaths of at least 13 people who have died from carbon monoxide poisoning led to the August 2015 filing of a class action lawsuit in federal court in California in which it is alleged that 10 major carmakers concealed the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning in more than five million cars with keyless ignitions.

Cars with keyless ignitions can be started with the use of a keyless fob. When that fob is in the vicinity of the vehicle, the car can be started with the push of a button. The problem is that drivers can leave their vehicle, taking their fob with them, with the car still running.

As alleged in the class action suit, “drivers have parked their affected vehicles inside their garages and removed the keyless fobs, only to later discover that the engines never actually turned off. As a result, deadly carbon monoxide— often referred to as the ‘silent killer’ because it is a colorless, odorless gas — can fill enclosed spaces and spread to the attached homes.”

According to Consumer Reports, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has been monitoring the issue and has received complaints over the past few years but has failed to implement any new rules about the design or use of keyless ignitions.

Either an audible alert or an automatic engine shut-off are two ideas that have been suggested to prevent cars from continuing to run unintentionally. While a number of car manufacturers have added audible warnings to their key fobs, five companies have not: Chrysler, Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, and Volkswagen. No company has added an automatic shut-off feature.

If you own a car with a keyless ignition, please make sure that the engine is turned off before exiting the vehicle. If you or a loved one has suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning or otherwise been injured as a result of accidentally leaving your car running, please give us a call at (770) 727-5550 or chat live online with a member of our staff today. We represent and seek compensation on behalf of individuals in Georgia and elsewhere who have been injured by dangerous and defective products.