In a move that is sure to be fought by the auto industry, Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) has introduced a bill that would call for much stiffer penalties for auto executives and companies that delay recalls. In one case, executives who fail to immediately initiate recalls that ended with fatal accidents could face up to life in prison.
"Painful recent examples at Toyota and GM have shown us we also must make it easier to hold accountable those who jeopardize consumers' safety," McCaskill said in a statement announcing a new automotive and highway safety bill. "With millions of Americans behind the wheel every day, and more than 33,000 killed on our roads each year, we've got to do more to keep our cars and the roads we drive them on safe."