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General Motors 130 articles

Hundreds harmed by GM ignition switch defect barred from justice

Ben Pillars told Bloomberg News that he always wondered why his wife’s Pontiac Grand Am veered across a Michigan highway on a winter day in 2005, putting her into the path of an oncoming Toyota minivan. The crash sent his wife into a coma from which she never emerged, and she died in March 2012, taking with her any information that could have helped solve the mystery of her accident. But Mr. Pillars found answers when General Motors announced its ignition switch recall last year, which encompassed millions of vehicles, eventually including his wife’s 2005 Grand Am. GM first recalled ... Read More

Federal report slams NHTSA’s failures in GM ignition switch disaster

A harsh new report from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) demonstrates how the negligence and incompetence of a federal regulatory agency in addressing automotive safety defects can amount to dozens of deaths and hundreds of catastrophic injuries. On Monday, the Office of the Inspector General released a report of its findings from its investigation of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) response to General Motors’ defective ignition switches, which put the lives of tens of millions of U.S. motorists at risk. According to the report, consumers, car dealers, and mechanics specifically reported the GM ignition switch defect, which can ... Read More

Feds may probe GM’s Chevy Tahoe for side-airbag malfunction

Federal auto safety regulators are considering opening an investigation of allegedly defective side curtain airbags in certain General Motors vehicles that can fail to protect passengers in rollover crashes, citing an August 2011 crash in which three children were ejected from a 2010 Chevrolet Tahoe SUV. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Office of Defect Investigations said Monday it received a petition requesting an investigation of 2010 Chevrolet Tahoe SUVs. The Detroit News reports that Donald Friedman of Xprts LLC, a Santa Barbara, Calif., engineering consulting firm, filed the petition in August. “The petition cites a 2011 Texas crash involving a ... Read More

Plaintiffs accuse GM, lawyers of ignition switch cover-up

General Motors and its lawyers worked together to cover up the automaker’s deadly ignition switch defect and avoid a recall, multidistrict litigations (MDL) plaintiffs asserted in a motion to compel documents filed last week in a New York federal court. The plaintiffs argue that starting in 2010, Atlanta-based international corporate law firm King & Spalding warned GM repeatedly about the legal trouble that would befall GM if knowledge of its ignition switch defect became known. To remedy this, the law firm encouraged the new post-bankruptcy GM to quietly settle with plaintiffs harmed by the ignition switch defect in Chevrolet Cobalts, ... Read More

Ignition switch victims to challenge GM bankruptcy ruling

Several plaintiffs barred from suing General Motors by a bankruptcy judge’s ruling have taken the first steps to appeal the decision, which shields the automaker from complaints involving ignition switch malfunctions any time before June 1, 2009 – the day the “old GM” reorganized to become the “new GM.” According to Bloomberg, a group of plaintiffs harmed in accidents allegedly caused by GM’s dangerous ignition switch flaw filed a notice of appeal Wednesday to a federal court in Manhattan.  The victims seek to overturn an April 15 ruling by bankruptcy judge Robert Gerber, which jettisons GM’s liabilities prior to the ... Read More

NHTSA to Auto Industry: No more Mr. Nice Guy

Less than six months on the job, Mark Rosekind, the new National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) administrator, is putting enormous pressure on automakers to clean up their safety and compliance or face meaningful consequences. U.S. lawmakers and safety experts have relentlessly criticized and belittled NHTSA in recent years for its failure to hold automakers accountable for safety defects, taking action only once the problems mushroomed into deadly crises. The Detroit Free Press said that Mr. Rosekind “let loose a stunning display of force” last week in getting an obstinate Takata to sign a consent agreement that expanded its airbag ... Read More

Criminal charges pending for GM’s mishandling of defective ignition switch

According to the Wall Street Journal, General Motors (GM) may soon be facing criminal charges brought by the U.S. Justice Department to punish the company for its alleged lies regarding the decade-long defective ignition switch cover-up. GM was able to avoid class action fraud lawsuits linked to the long-delayed ignition switch recalls because of its 2009 bankruptcy restructuring.  However, the automaker’s luck might soon take a turn for the worse as federal prosecutors attempt to discern which charges will be brought and how GM will proceed, whether by pleading guilty, or making a deferred-prosecution deal. If GM were to agree to ... Read More

GM recalls certain 2015 Buick Encore and Chevy Trax vehicles

According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), both 2015 Buick Encore and Chevrolet Trax vehicles are now being recalled by General Motors (GM). The NHTSA’s notice suggests that approximately 2,295 of the vehicles registered in the U.S. suffer from an electrical issue that may disable power steering while the vehicle is in motion. The NHTSA released the following statement in regard to the cause of the latest GM recall: “In certain [Encore and Trax] vehicles, the steering column assembly housing may come into contact with the power steering printed circuit board. This contact could eventually cause enough wear on the ... Read More

Approved GM ignition switch death claims climb to 67

The General Motors (GM) ignition switch compensation fund approved three new death claims and five new injury claims, fund administrators said Monday, raising the total number of deaths linked to the defective GM ignition switch to 67 and the personal injury toll to 113. A total of 4,342 claims were submitted to the compensation fund by the January 31 deadline, 478 of which were wrongful death claims. To date, 1,492 ignition switch fund claims remain under review, including 133 death claims. Fund administrator Kenneth Feinstein has said each eligible death claim will receive at least $1 million. Fund administrators have ... Read More

GM recalls cars for power steering and software control updates

General Motors (GM) has announced two new safety recalls affecting more than 145,000 vehicles. On Saturday the carmaker it was recalling 81,123 additional cars over potential problems with the electric power steering system, expanding a previous recall of 1.3 million vehicles for steering problems. The cars recalled Saturday include 2006 and 2007 Chevrolet Malibu, Malibu Maxx, and Pontiac G6 cars. According to GM, drivers of these vehicles may experience a sudden loss of power steering assist. The carmaker said that if the vehicle loses power steering, the driver will be notified by a chime and a message on the dash. ... Read More