Toyota Emissions Scandal
The carmaker did not report defects on time

The infamous emissions scandal has returned and this time it is Toyota that has landed itself in trouble which will cost it $180 million (Rs. 1315 crores).

This said amount will have to be paid to the US government by the firm over allegations that it failed to report pollution control defects in its vehicles on time.

A government lawsuit was filed against the Japanese carmaker accusing it of delays in filing as many as 78 emissions defect reports as required under the nation’s Clean Air Act.

Acting US Attorney in Manhattan, Audrey Strauss, said in a statement on Thursday that Toyota’s actions “undermined the EPA’s self-disclosure system” and likely led to “delayed or avoided emissions-related recalls”.

The car manufacturer’s actions from the year 2005 to 2015 brought financial benefits and excessive vehicle pollution, the statement claimed.

Once there are 25 cases of the same pollution control defect detected in a model year, automakers, by law, have to report to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) about it.

Filed and settled on Thursday, the lawsuit stated the reports covered millions of vehicles and some were about 8 years late.

In a statement, Toyota said it notified the problems to the EPA 5 years ago after finding a “process gap” that brought delays in filing the defect reports. According to the automaker, the reporting delays resulted in a “negligible” impact on emissions.

Moreover, the company said it submitted all relevant delayed filings while it also put in place a new “robust reporting and compliance practices” within months of discovering the issue.

It also added that although there were reporting delays, customers were notified and vehicles that needed to be recalled were fixed.

But the Justice Department would not let the Toyota emissions scandal that easily and said, Toyota reported the defects only when required under a less-stringent California standard.

The issue was then settled when the company agreed in court to pay the penalty and assented to quickly investigating future emissions-related defects and report them to the EPA on time.

This is not the first time a manufacturer will be paying fines for violating the Clean Air Act. Both Volkswagen and FCA have also had to shell out huge amounts over the issue, with Volkswagen also getting in trouble, along with Audi, in India recently.

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