Mike Andrews, who was co-counsel with Sean Keith for the Benton County seatbelt failure case that cost Bentonville High School junior Sara Symons her life, has filed one of the first lawsuits against General Motors for the failure of the Ignition Switch. Recently it was discovered that GM appeared to have knowledge about a deadly defect in its ignition switch system as early as 2002 when it approved the switch to be installed in many of its vehicles.
The recall was issued because of a problem with the ignition switch that can allow the key to unintentionally switch to the “accessory” or “off” position, turning off the engine and most of the safety features such as power steering and brakes. If the key is jarred or bumped into that position, the air bags are unlikely to work if there’s a crash.
Recent investigations by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the U. S. Government have revealed that GM was well-aware that the ignition switch did not meet safety standards in 2002 when they approved their installation into GM vehicles. Also, that GM was aware that the switches had caused a serious safety problem by the early 2000’s.
According to the documents submitted to the [investigative] committee, GM opened numerous internal investigations into the now-recalled vehicles since the early-2000s, but did not recall the vehicles due to a number of reasons, including “tooling cost” and piece price being “too high.”
Further problems were caused by GMs own engineering staff. A panel of Congressional investigators recently discovered a “smoking gun memo” dated May 27, 2006, in which a lead GM engineer allowed a new ignition part to be implemented without changing the original part number. This decision “caused years of delay in in tracing a defect on nearly 2.6 million Chevrolet Cobalt, Saturn Ion, and other Saturn Pontiac models.” This allowed the faulty switches to be categorized along with the newer, safer ignition switches, thus masking the serious defect in the original switch.
Our firm is investigating the GM Ignition Switch Recall cases for the following make and models:
- Chevy Cobalt 2005-2007
- Pontiac G5 2005-2007
- Saturn Ion 2003-2007
- Chevrolet HHR 2006-2007
- Pontiac Solstice 2006-2007
- Saturn Sky 2006-2007
If you or a family member were injured as a result of the failure of the ignition switch contact our office by calling 1-800-698-3644 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org