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GM delayed recall of midsize vehicles

General Motors has recalled more than 50 million vehicles this year for various issues, with 17 million being called back for ignition switch issues. However, a recent report prepared by federal regulators found that the embattled automaker was slow to correct these defects. In fact, regulators discovered that GM knew about the issues involving millions of midsize vehicles for 11 years before calling for recalls. 

Indeed, the recalls of small GM cars touched off a flurry of activity this year and resulted in a $35 million fine. But the continuing issue involves how much GM actually knew about the problem, and how many additional accidents can be attributed to it. As a matter of law, an automaker has a continuing duty to ensure that its products work safely for their intended uses. This also means that a company should keep consumers safe from defects that can create dangerous hazards for them.

Issuing a product recall is a common way of avoiding this issue. It informs consumers of a potential danger and gives them an opportunity to repair the vehicle. However, if the defect is found to be the proximate cause of an accident, an automaker could be held liable; thus exposing it to potential monetary damages.

If you have been involved in a crash while driving a GM vehicle, it may be worth looking into whether a defect was responsible, even in part, for the crash. An injured party may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages. An experienced personal injury attorney can advise you. 

Source: ABC “GM delayed recall in another ignition switch case,” July 18, 2014

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