Can Machine Learning Defuse the Ticking Time Bomb of Open Recalls?

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Did you know that 150 million vehicles have been recalled in the USA since 2014? That's 38 percent of all the cars in America. And, according to Recall Masters, 50 million of them will be hitting the roads this summer—just in time for summer's road trips. The open recall epidemic is one of America's most dangerous issues. So why is nobody talking about it, or checking to see if their cars are in recall? 

Here's the rub: even if they did, there's a small chance they would find the information they needed. Information about recalls is decentralized, unorganized, and notoriously difficult to find, especially since the government doesn't collect or keep data on the number of auto recalls and how dealerships deal with them. This lack of data means that many Americans affected by recalls don't even know their car is unsafe. Similarly, Americans don't know how many of these recalls have been taken care of, and how many cars are driving around their roads putting everyone in danger. 

That's where independent companies are stepping in. They're using a big data approach to analyze recall data dumps—they then sort it into actionable insights, which make it easy to find cars with open recalls and get them off the road. It's all tied together with machine learning.

First, a company collects an enormous amount of unstructured recall data. Then, they cull, process, and organize it—specifically looking for data like the owner of the car (even if it's had multiple owners) and if the car has an open recall on it. Lastly, they compile the information into a searchable database for auto owners, and work with dealerships so consumers are presented with multiple options for locations they can take their car to. 

The efforts of these independent companies are producing incredible results. Over 63 million vehicles with open recalls have been identified, and hundreds of thousands of these vehicles have been brought in for repair. They're making their recall databases truly comprehensive by pulling from over 50 sources that have various information about recall statuses. And they're working with more than 1,000 dealerships to get these problem cars off the road.

The government isn't working to solve America's recall crisis—leaving these independent companies to step in and use machine learning to make America's roads safe to drive again. So this summer, use the information they've collected and check if your own car is safe to drive. 

What to Do 

  1. Visit www.motorsafety.org
  2. Enter your car's VIN 
  3. Click “Check recall status”
  4. If your car is in recall, you will be directed to a certified dealer to fix the problem

About the Author
Chris Miller is President of Recall Masters, a leading provider of automotive recall news, data, training, and communications. Privately held and based in the San Francisco Bay area, the company is dedicated to helping automakers and their dealers expedite the repair of recalled vehicles and make the roadways safer for everyone. Christopher has more than 17 years of experience building software to automate marketing communications. He has worked with marquee brands including HSBC/Household Automotive, Washington Mutual, Residential Pacific Mortgage, ServiceMagic, Monumental Life Insurance, Mercedes Benz USA, BMW/Mini North America, Volvo North America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Moxy Solutions, and Costco Automotive Group.




 


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