Montana residents may be affected by a substantial recall announced by General Motors on June 30. An analyst with Kelley Blue Book says the series of recalls announced by GM has not had any significant impact on the automaker's sales as of yet. In this latest recall, 7.6 million vehicles are affected, many due to the issues stemming from the faulty ignition switch that initiated earlier recalls.
The defective ignition switch in older models may turn suddenly, cutting power to the vehicle mid-transit. The 6.8 million GM models affected by this defect include the 2004 to 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix, the 2000 to 2005 Monte Carlo and Chevy Impala, the 1999 to 2005 Pontiac Grand Am, the 1999 to 2004 Oldsmobile Alero, the 1998 to 2002 Oldsmobile Intrigue and the 1997 to 2005 Chevrolet Malibu. Approximately 554,000 2003 to 2014 Cadillac CTS sedans and 2004 to 2006 Cadillac SRX vehicles were also recalled for similar issues.
The automaker suffered public scrutiny and was spurred to review its recall process after a report revealed that GM had delayed recalling 2.2 million vehicles for 10 years. The issue with the ignition switch was connected to 50 car accidents and 13 fatalities. The Department of Justice and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are currently investigating why GM delayed the recall. GM revealed that amongst the vehicles recalled on June 30, three people died and eight others suffered injuries when seven accidents occurred.
When a defective product causes people to suffer injuries, the company that manufactured the product may be held liable. If there is evidence that the company knew about the defect and still proceeded with the product's distribution, a court may order that it pay punitive damages to the victims.
Source: Los Angeles Times, "GM recalls 7.6 million more cars, most for ignition switch issue", Jerry Hirsch, June 30, 2014