Will Rental Companies Have to Fix Recalls Before Renting?

Two consumer groups and a U.S. senator have asked the Federal Trade Commission to force Enterprise Holdings Inc. to fix vehicles under recall before renting them out, according to the Associated Press.

The groups are asking that rental car companies live by the same rule that requires auto dealers to fix vehicles under recall notice before they can be sold.

Safety groups say most renters don't know whether their rental vehicles have been the subject of a recall, which poses a potential safety threat. The issue has come even more to the forefront following safety recalls by Toyota Motor Co. and other automakers.

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) told the FTC on Nov. 1 that rental car companies should be held to the same standard as auto dealers. He added that if the FTC doesn't act, Congress would legislate the issue.

The Center for Auto Safety and Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety petitioned the FTC in August to direct Enterprise Holdings to change take recalled vehicles out of the rental fleet until they are fixed.

Enterprise Holdings said it parks vehicles and declines to rent them when auto manufacturers make that recommendation. An Enterprise spokesperson said the company's practice "frequently goes above and beyond what is required" and noted that Enterprise grounded more than 30,000 recalled Toyota and Pontiac vehicles earlier this year.

The requests followed a $15 million jury verdict in California earlier this year that found Enterprise failed to fix a recalled Chrysler PT Cruiser, which led to the deaths of two sisters.

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