The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has adjusted its VIN-based safety recall look-up tool.

On August 20, 2013, NHTSA published a final rule requiring certain vehicle manufacturers to allow the secure electronic transfer of manufacturer recall data to NHTSA when a consumer submits VIN information to the agency's Web site for purposes of learning vehicle recall information.

This requirement applies to manufacturers who manufacture 25,000 light vehicles annually or 5,000 motorcycles annually. Further information about the requirement to transfer recall data to NHTSA based upon a consumer's VIN may be found in the August 20, 2013 final rule.

In the final rule, NHTSA committed to hosting a public meeting to discuss the technical specification that would facilitate the secure transfer of recall information. That public meeting was held on January 22, 2014, and was attended by vehicle manufacturers, equipment manufacturers, industry trade groups, safety advocates, vehicle history report providers, and members of the public. NHTSA reviewed a VIN look-up tool technical specification document it previously made available to the public for discussion at the meeting, and attendees offered their commentary and suggestions, asked questions, and sought clarification on various points.

Based on the information NHTSA received from the public meeting, as well as a review of the specifications, it adjusted the technical specifications and made available the final technical specifications. The technical specifications may change to address problems, issues or difficulties that arise from time-to- time during the operation of the VIN-look-up tool. In those situations, the agency will provide notice of its remedies to covered manufacturers through EWR and place the technical specifications on the agency's Web site, www.safercar.gov.