The Dieselgate diesel emissions scandal is one of the most controversial and elaborate scams to ever happen to the automotive industry. Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and other car manufacturers have had to deal with paying fines and compensation, dealing with class-action lawsuits or group litigation cases, and recalling affected vehicles for correction.
However, it is the car owners who have had to deal with the most devastating effects of the scandal. Emissions coming from diesel vehicles are a danger to the environment and to human health. The defeat device may also affect vehicle performance, which is an inconvenience and extra expense for car owners. This is why Money Saving Expert’s Martin Lewis decided to share his thoughts and tips for affected drivers.
Aside from talking about the vehicles that are affected by the diesel emissions scandal, Lewis also stressed the importance of legal claims against carmakers that used defeat devices. Claims allow car owners to receive compensation for the inconvenience – financial or otherwise, that the manufacturers subjected them to by using cheat software.
Although the Dieselgate compensation varies according to the circumstances of every case, each driver is expected to receive thousands for their claims. For example, car owners in the UK who fell prey to Volkswagen’s use of the defeat device can get at least £2,100 each after the carmaker agreed to enter a settlement worth £193 million with over 90,000 drivers.
Which vehicles are on the list?
Lewis encouraged car owners in England and Wales with diesel vehicles manufactured between the years 2007 and 2018 to band together so they can file a group legal claim. This is applicable to vehicles that were purchased via financing or outright cash payment.
Aside from Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW, other carmakers that are involved in the Dieselgate diesel emissions scandal, specifically:
- Land Rover
What exactly is the Dieselgate diesel emissions scandal and how has it affected car owners?
The Dieselgate scandal changed people’s perception of diesel vehicles. Prior to the 2015 diesel emissions scam, most car owners preferred diesel compared to gasoline and other fuel options. After US authorities discovered defeat devices in VW’s diesel vehicles, things slowly changed.
Defeat devices can detect when a vehicle is about to go into emissions testing. Once the vehicles are being tested, the devices reduce emissions levels using artificial means so the amount of expelled toxic gases would stay within the limits of the World Health Organization. Vehicles with defeat devices, therefore, appear clean and safe and follow emissions regulations. In reality, however, they are heavy pollutants.
When the vehicles are driven in real-world road conditions, they emit nitrogen oxides or NOx in voluminous amounts. These are often in excess of the limits set by the WHO and the European Union. NOx has dangerous effects on the environment and on human health. It can impact vegetation and one’s mental health.
NOx forms when nitric oxide (NO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) combine and react. It is responsible for the formation of smog and acid rain. Moreover, ground-level ozone develops when NOx reacts with other chemicals.
Ground-level ozone significantly affects vegetation. Plants and crops become weaker and more susceptible to frost and damage. It can also stop the growth of plants and crops.
As mentioned earlier, mental health is also affected when a person is exposed to nitrogen oxide. It can trigger episodes of depression, anxiety, and even mood disorders.
If a person is exposed to nitrogen oxide, they can experience several health impacts. Low-level NOx exposure opens you up to the possibility of developing asthma or, for those who already have it, aggravated symptoms of asthma. Other health impacts include breathing problems, headaches, fluid in the lungs, corroded teeth, and respiratory issues such as bronchitis and emphysema.
If the exposure is regular and involves high levels of NOx, the possible health repercussions include more susceptibility to certain diseases, particularly cardiovascular-related illnesses and cancer, spasm of the vocal cord (or laryngospasm), reduced lung function (chronic), asphyxiation, fluid in the lungs, other respiratory problems, and early death.
Global deaths linked to air pollution increase in number practically every year, which is why more and more car owners are moving forward with their emissions claims.
Why you need to file a claim
Lewis is right in encouraging affected car owners to file a diesel claim. There are several reasons for this:
- Your carmaker deceived you and mis-sold the vehicle. It was marketed as clean and safe, which is the opposite of what it really is: a NOx-emitting pollutant.
- Your carmaker had you pay a premium amount for a product that does not perform as promised.
- Your carmaker made you contribute to the already high levels of air pollution in your area.
- Your carmaker exposed you and the people around you to life-changing health impacts.
You deserve to be compensated for all these reasons.
How do I file my diesel claim?
You’ll have to work with a panel of emissions solicitors to ensure that you go through the right process. You’ll also need to get in touch with ClaimExperts.co.uk as they can help determine if you are eligible for filing a diesel compensation claim.