Chairman Rockefeller Calls for Aggressive Legislative Action to Restore Safety of American Consumers

~Toyota's Recalls and the Government's Response~

March 2, 2010

JDR Head ShotWASHINGTON, D.C.—I want to thank all of today’s witnesses for their cooperation in making sure the Committee got all the information it was looking for.

We have had a very full and long day, and—with the ongoing work of this Committee—two things are already very clear to me:

First, Toyota needs to restore its consumers’ confidence and seriously recommit itself to quality and open communication.

And second, the government has to do a better job of keeping the American people safe.

In this case, I firmly believe that is going to require strong legislative action. To name just a few examples I have in mind:


  1. 1) It is clear that we need to revisit the TREAD Act.
  2. 2) We must seriously consider a rulemaking that mandates brake-override technology across all makes and models.
  3. 3) Car makers should be required to provide the hardware that dealers and government investigators need to read electronic data recorders.
  4. 4) We also should require senior executives to certify the information their companies provide to NHTSA is 100 percent correct and accurate.


I have other ideas. I know my colleagues do, too.

If we are really serious about making sure this situation does not happen again, we need to work aggressively on this effort and that is what I intend to do with my colleagues. 

I have 1,050 workers in my state who depend on Toyota thriving and succeeding again. And I have every confidence that you can earn back the trust of your customers and the American people.

Every single Toyota owner deserves a full accounting of what happened and why, and a clear indication of what we here today are going to do to make sure safety is never second place.