Judge Tells Volkswagen It Has One Month to Fix Dirty Diesel Cars
Feb 26, 2016 09:05 PM EST
Volkswagen has been the subject of hundreds of class-action lawsuits for having admitted to cheating their emissions tests. Now, a US judge who has been assigned to oversee these lawsuits says that he wants the company to give an answer on how they plan to turn almost 600,000 diesel cars compliant with clean air laws.
The judge wants the German automaker to give their answer in a month's time.
Reuters reported that at a hearing held in California on Tuesday, District Court Judge Charles R. Breyer was strict in his decision with the lawyers of Volkswagen. The judge told the lawyers that he will be expecting them to report back to him by March 24th with the available technical solutions the company plans to implement in fixing the affected vehicles. Additionally, the lawyers must detail the current status of negotiations on how affected owners will be settled.
The judge shared on CTV News that six months has already been a long enough time for the German automaker to figure out a way to fix the problem. Additionally, Breyer stressed that the number of vehicles that remain on the road every day has been exuding excess pollution that goes into the atmosphere. And even if they wanted to, Volkswagen owners are stuck with these vehicles they couldn't even sell.
The judge says that "It's an ongoing harm that has to be addressed." Through his experience with lawyers in his field, Breyer shared that if "you give them a year to do something, it will take them a year to do something. If you give them 30 days to do something, they'll do something in 30 days."
Back in September, Volkswagen had admitted to the allegations that they had used installed illegal software in its "Clean Diesel" engines. Through this, they were able to cheat their cars to pass laboratory emissions tests even though their vehicles spewed out harmful nitrogen oxide, at levels up to 40 times allowed in real road operation.
On Consumerist, a spokeswoman for the automaker said on Tuesday that the company was trying to look for solutions "as quickly as possible."
Volkswagen is currently working at settling negotiations with throngs of lawyers representing defective car owners, the California Air Resources Board, and the Environmental Protection Agency. An ongoing criminal investigation is also being done.