General Motors may attract penalty for faulty ignition switches

General Motors may attract penalty for faulty ignition switches
author image Nikhil Puthran
Monday 03 March 2014, 11:01 AM

General Motors, a top brand name in the automotive sector may face wrath from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) for delaying in attending to more than 1.6 million vehicles featuring faulty ignition switches. The technical fault is held responsible for fatal crashes in recent time. During interrogation by the NHTA, if the delay in fixes is proven, the company may attract a hefty fine. The agency said, “The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened an investigation into the timeliness of General Motors' recall of faulty ignition switches to determine whether GM properly followed the legal processes and requirements for reporting recalls.”

General Motors may attract penalty for faulty ignition switches

Previously General Motors stated that rough road conditions, weight on the key ring or other jarring event may cause the ignition switch to run into 'Off' position, resulting in engine and most of car's electricals coming to an abrupt halt. Till date 31 incidents have been reported, which includes 13 fatal crashes. A recent apology given out in public by Mary Barra, GM Chief Executive said, “We deeply regret the events that led to the recall and this investigation. As our detailed chronology indicates, we intend to fully cooperate with NHTSA and we welcome the opportunity to help the agency have a full understanding of the facts.”

General Motors may attract penalty for faulty ignition switches

It is said that General Motors was aware about the problem as early as 2004 but only issued a service bulletin for its dealers sometime in 2005. The issue was only tackled by asking users to refrain from attaching any object to the key rings that may result in abrupt turning engine 'Off'. The cars affected by this faulty ignition switch are 2005-2007 Chevrolet Cobalt, 2003-2007 Saturn Ion, 2007 Pontiac G5, 2006-2007 Chevrolet HHR, 2006-2007 Pontiac Solstice and 2007 Saturn Sky vehicles. All the cars in the list are reported to be made for the Canada and American markets.

Exact fine amount is not known for now. The amount may be known post interrogation by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. For now the company is working out a plan to fix the affected range of vehicles.

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