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Recent Survey Indicates Motorists Feel Safe Even After Recalls; iPhone App Says They Shouldn't

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On: Wed, Jun 30, 2010 at 1:37PM | By: Sherry Christiansen

Recent Survey Indicates Motorists Feel Safe Even After Recalls; iPhone App Says They Shouldn't

In spite all of the recent media on recalls for many automotive brands, a survey conducted by Speedemissions Inc in Atlanta, suggests that motorists in the U.S. feel safe, or safer driving their vehicles than they did a year ago.  In fact, the survey polled over 1,300 motorists and 79% responded favorably.

But according to an article posted on Speedemissions.com; a new iPhone application that diagnoses an automobile's computer systems points out that consumers may not be as knowledgeable about the mechanical safety of their vehicles as they may have initially believed.

The new technology is the first iPhone, iPod touch and iPad application to address vehicle Safety Systems, such as anti-lock brakes, air bags, safety-restraint systems and tire pressure monitoring systems as well as On Board Diagnostic (OBD) codes for vehicle emissions and other engine problems. Some iPhone applications read only the OBD codes, not the safety codes.

Now vehicle owners can use the same technology, that in the past was only accessible to service center technicians to check actual or potential mechanical problems for themselves. This application would also be very useful for checking the on board diagnostic port when considering the purchase of a used car.

Motorists with a vehicle that is 1996 or newer are able to use the technology to diagnose underlying problems with their engine, transmission, safety systems and more when their "Check Engine" light goes on, or even when there are no warning lights to indicate that there is a problem.

According to the CEO of Speedemissions, founder of the new diagnostic system called CARbonga; "Our survey shows that 80% of consumers know something could be amiss with their vehicles even though the warning lights do not indicate a problem. Still, 81% said they trust their automobile manufacturer and/or their auto's electronic system to warn them of problems. That's a potentially dangerous gamble."

What motorists with seemingly blind faith may not realize is that last year over 6,000 bulletins were issued by the National Highway Transportation Safety Association, and over 16 million vehicles were recalled (a 56% increase over the previous year). According to the survey, 38% of vehicle owners were not even aware that the bulletins were even issued.

When you consider the statistics of recalled factory parts and safety issues, It may be time for consumers to start taking safety of their automobiles into their own hands and stop relying 100% on the automakers.


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