Posted On February 26, 2018 In Personal Injury
There have been many auto defect scandals over the past few decades. We published a prior blog on our website that discusses how the Ford Pinto severely damaged the reputation of one of the world’s largest automakers. The Ford Pinto is only the tip of the iceberg. Other automakers have also knowingly released dangerous products on to the market. General Motors (GM) released faulty ignition switches that are thought to be responsible for 124 deaths and 274 injuries.
Ignition switches in these vehicles could be triggered into the accessory position, in many cases while people were driving. Several outcomes would be possible if you were driving a GM vehicle when this happened. Your vehicle’s engine and power steering would lose power. The airbags and anti-lock braking system would also be rendered useless. You would have little control over your vehicle if you were travelling at high speeds. The airbags in your vehicle would not deploy if you were involved in a collision. Many of the people injured or killed by GM’s ignition switch likely experienced similar scenarios.
During the early morning hours of July 29, 2005, then 16-year-old Amber Marie Rose was headed home from a party when she lost control of her vehicle and slammed into a tree. Investigators initially determined that alcohol and speeding were factors in the crash. However, it was also discovered that the 2005 Chevy Cobalt’s airbags never deployed. A private investigator hired by Amber’s family discovered that the ignition switch had moved into the accessory position.
There are similarities between the Ford Pinto and GM ignition switch recalls. Ford and GM knew their products would pose a danger to consumers. In fact, GM first discovered problems with its ignition switch while it was testing the Saturn Ion in 2001. Additional ignition switch problems were noticed in 2003 and 2004. By 2005, GM declined to fix the problem due to concerns over costs. GM warned dealerships about the defect, but did not issue a recall until almost ten years later.
Automakers feel compelled to cut costs and to protect the reputation of their products. Unfortunately, they pursue these goals at the cost of public safety.
If you were injured by a defective automobile or auto product, then you should speak with one of the auto defect attorneys at Mike Love & Associates, LLC. Automakers are not necessarily absolved of liability for issuing recalls. Our attorneys could help you determine legal options for seeking justice against the parties who have caused you harm.