In 2014, General Motors (GM), recalled over 30 million cars and trucks. The recalls were issued for a number of reasons, including defective vehicles with faulty designs of side airbags and defective exhaust parts that can overheat, sparking a fire. However, the most notorious GM recall affected over 2.5 million cars and was caused by an ignition switch design flaw that was tied to over 50 deaths and thousands of serious injuries. Engineers concluded that a design problem could cause the ignition switch to move from the “run” to the “off” position while the car was moving. If the ignition went into the “off” position, the power steering would turn off and disabled the airbags, causing the unsuspecting driver to lose control of the car.
GM has faced multiple class action lawsuits related to the faulty ignition switch and GM’s alleged knowledge of the problem. More specifically, these lawsuits allege that GM waited several years after the problem was detected before initiating a recall. If GM would have alerted vehicle owners right away, it could have prevented numerous injuries and deaths connected to the ignition problem.
Since 2014, GM has replaced millions of faulty components including ignition switches in affected vehicles. The company also set aside over $600 million for victims, although this is unlikely to provide the proper compensation for victims. Affected individuals have the right to file personal injury lawsuits for medical and hospital expenses, past and future lost earnings due to injuries, pain and suffering, and punitive damages in the case of egregious wrongdoing.
Automobile manufacturers are legally obligated to manufacture and sell vehicles free from any known defects. If a defect is detected, it must be corrected quickly and completely. If a company withholds critical safety information or circumvents government safety guidelines by selling a vehicle with known defects, the manufacturer can and should be held liable for injuries or death linked to the vehicle defects.
Visit www.safercar.gov, a NHTSA website, to check if your car has been included in a recall. You will simply need the VIN number of your vehicle. If your vehicle has been recalled, promptly contact the dealer and schedule a service appointment. If your vehicle is part of the GM recall, remove any extra weight from the ignition key (extra keys, special key chains, etc.) prior to driving the vehicle.
If you or a family member has suffered injuries or death related to a faulty component in a vehicle or a recalled car or truck, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help.
Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties. The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work. Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury. For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.