Faulty GM Ignition Switches Killed Over 13 People, NHTSA Reckons

Most American drivers know by now what the GM recall fiasco boils down to - very unsafe cars. Even though the Detroit manufacturer reckons 13 people have been killed in accidents connected to the defective ignition switches, the NHTSA begs to differ…
Revised GM ignition switch 1 photo
Photo: GM
Some lawyers and car safety advocates directly involved in this adversity believe that GM's estimate is a little bit optimistic, with the final death toll likely to surpass the 13 fatalities mark. Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, the acting head of the NHTSA declared that "We believe it's likely that more than 13 lives were lost."

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's David Friedman continued by saying "GM knew about the safety defect, but did not act to protect Americans from that defect until this year. The families and friends of those lost in the crashes deserve straight answers about what happened to their loved ones."

Back in March, certain reports suggested that the actual death tally involving only two affected vehicles - the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion, exceeds 303 fatally injured victims. Like alligators smelling blood in the water, trial lawyers and litigators are waiting patiently for further info to surface and ultimately nail GM harder than ever.

On a different note, head of the Center for Auto Safety Clarence Ditlow is far less reserved than the NHTSA's acting head. Speaking to the WSJ, he declared "My estimate is based on my reading of NHTSA's own reports which show similar accidents where airbags haven't deployed. It just makes sense the number would be higher."

Until today, defective ignition switches have been installed to over 2.6 million small vehicles built by GM. Still, that's a minuscule amount compared to the grand total of 15.8 million vehicles recalled by Government Motors since the 1st of January, 2014.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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