by Tim O’Hare
The General Motors ignition switch issue has made headlines the last two months since an announcement was made in February regarding an initial recall of about 778,000 compact cars. Since February, the list of recalled vehicles has grown to more than 2.6 million vehicles, including an additional three million vehicles that were recalled for another problem.
Why is the GM Ignition Recall such a big deal? Because GM has reportedly been aware of the issue for more than 12 years, but never issued a recall. The ignition switch problem is to blame for the deaths of at least 13 people, possibly many more, and the injuries of dozens. What’s even more tragic — the small part that needed to be replaced on these vehicles cost just 57 cents.
Not every car recall situation is as controversial as the GM ignition switch recall, but this issue has brought to light the importance of consumers being aware of recalls on their vehicles — and being provided the necessary information and repairs to ensure the vehicles they drive are safe.
Common car defects requiring recalls
According to the NHTSA, some of the most common defects that may lead to a vehicle recall include:
• Problems with accelerator pedals or brake mechanisms freezing suddenly
• Airbags failing to deploy properly
• Malfunction or break of steering parts that cause loss of control of the vehicle
• Fuel leaks and problems with wiring that may lead to a fire
• Faulty or defective tires
Remedies for a recalled vehicle
If you own a car that has recently been recalled, you may be entitled to legal remedies including economic damages, manufacturer reimbursement, class action lawsuits (if the recall has affected enough consumers) and personal injury recovery.
If you have been injured due to a defect with your vehicle, you may be entitled to recover financial losses associated with your injury. Furthermore, if you have lost a loved one due to a vehicle defect, you may be entitled to financial restitution.
Though no amount of money can replace a loved one, or even cover the true losses associated with a severe physical injury, all automakers must be held accountable. The GM issue reaffirms that the safety of vehicles manufactured should be the top priority of any automaker.
If you have been seriously injured or lost a family member in a car accident caused by a vehicle defect or recalled car, contact The Law Offices of Tim O’Hare to speak with a Dallas personal injury attorney.
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