Ray LaHood to discuss Toyota recalls with Japan’s top transportation official

United States Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood and President Barack Obama

After much ado in the United States government over the whole Toyota situation, U.S. DOT Secretary Ray LaHood will meet to discuss the situation with Japan”s top transportation official today. Seiji Maehara, Japan”s transport minister, has commented on Toyota”s delayed reactions to safety issues. Mr. Maehara will be spending two days in Washington, meeting with LaHood, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, and Rep. James Oberstar, D-Minn., and will be discussing the Toyota situation, and high-speed rail technology.

Though this trip will be a brief one for Maehara, the dialogue between the countries will not be; LaHood is set to visit Japan next month with NHTSA administrator David Strickland and plans to meet with Toyota officials.

Problems continue for the former top selling automaker in America, as stability control issues forced a recall yesterday of 50,000 2003 Toyota Sequoias. In addition to yesterday”s recall, 609,400 Toyota and Lexus vehicles have been recalled in the last 10 days alone.

LaHood had previously mentioned to Detroit News that he was displeased with the treatment received by top NHTSA official Ron Medford during his Dec. visit to Japan, and that he expects a better reception for the American delegation this time around.

About the picture: Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, a Republican member of the Cabinet, feigns being a blocking back for President Barack Obama as he arrives backstage to meet with GOP House leaders before speaking to their issues conference at the Renaissance Baltimore Harbor Place Hotel in Baltimore, Md., Jan. 29, 2010.

– By: Stephen Calogera

Source: Detroit News
Image Source: Flickr – White House