Federal safety regulators levied a $3.5 million fine against Ferrari after the sports car maker failed to report three deaths and simply neglected to file reports of any kind with U.S. officials.
The news follows official reports that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is looking to sell the exotic carmaker.
“There is no excuse for failing to follow laws created to keep drivers safe, and our aggressive enforcement action today underscores the point that all automakers will be held accountable if they fail to do their part in our mission to keep Americans safe on the road,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is cracking down on automakers after lawmakers and others began applying pressure on the agency to be more vigilant in its oversight obligations.
NHTSA said Ferrari did not submit an early warning report to the agency for any quarter from the third quarter of 2011 through the second quarter of 2014. During that time, the three fatal accidents occurred, according to a consent order outlining the punishments. One of the three occurred in Germany, but the locations of the other two were not listed.
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Ferrari also agreed to develop new written procedures designed to comply with NHTSA regulations and to train people to track Ferrari’s accidents. Ferrari has agreed to draft those procedures in 45 days and brief NHTSA within 60 days.
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The fines come just days after Fiat Chrysler revealed in its third-quarter earnings report, it will sell 10% of Ferrari’s shares while the remaining 90% will go the only recently merged FCA’s own shareholders.
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Last month, the automaker revealed that long-time chief executive Luca di Montezemolo would step down, apparently as a result of a dispute with FCA Chief Sergio Marchionne over the sports carmaker’s direction. It didn’t help that Ferrari also had one of its worst years on the trying Formula One race circuit in decades.