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Software problem leads to pickup truck recall

Computers have come to play a bigger and bigger role in cars. So, a car’s safety isn’t just affected by its physical aspects, but also by what software it has. Just like mechanical defects, defects in a motor vehicle’s software could potentially pose safety risks for those in the vehicle.

A software problem is a behind a recent major auto recall here in the United States. The recall is by Fiat Chrysler and it is of certain Dodge Ram pickup trucks. Included among the recalled vehicles are certain model years of the Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500. Around a million pickup trucks in the U.S. fall under this recall, along with some in foreign countries.

The affected vehicles reportedly contain a software problem which could, under a certain set of circumstances, cause the pickup’s side airbags and seatbelts to not function the way they are supposed to in a rollover accident.

Reportedly, there have reports of two motor vehicle accidents in which this software problem has been noted as a possible factor. One of these accidents resulted in a fatality.

As this recall underscores, software systems can be connected to all sorts of key parts of a vehicle, including its safety systems. So, it is particularly important for automakers to ensure the software systems they put in their vehicles are free of problems that could compromise a vehicle’s safety. When a person suspects that any aspect of their vehicle, including its software, may not have functioned the way it was supposed to in a crash, skilled lawyers can give them guidance on whether pursuing an auto defect lawsuit would be a possible option for them.

Source: CNN Money, “Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.3 million Ram pickups for possibly fatal software problem,” Chris Isidore, May 12, 2017

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