The scandal in which General Motors is involved is without a doubt far from ending. Now, it has been revealed that the famous car maker has actually misled grieving families of people who suffered accidents with their vehicles.
Reports indicate that General Motors found about the dangerous ignition switch existent in numerous cars during a meeting that took place in May, 2009. The black boxes of Chevrolet Cobalts indicated that the potentially fatal defect was found in thousands of cars.
While the years have passed, General Motors has only told families of these victims that they had absolutely no evidence that the vehicles might be the ones to blame for the accidents involving the cars. During this time, officials from GM analyzed a series of internal documents and studies, but they claimed that the evidence was not enough.
In February, almost 5 years later, General Motors decided to recall over 1.6 million Cobalts and other small cars, which are believed to come with the ignition switches defect. Families of the victims have sued General Motors, but the company remained unmoved. The New York Times writes that they even went to threaten them with other lawsuits, just to scare them and determine the grieving families to withdraw their lawsuits.
Since 2009 till now, 23 fatal car crashes have been linked to the already mentioned models. Reports reveal that no less than 26 people died in these crashes. In many cases, General Motors determined families to give up trials and reach a settlement which indicated that the discussions need to be kept confidential. GM claimed that they only have evidence for 12 deaths linked to the ignition switch problem.
The truth is that the terms of the settlements closed in many cases are still confidential. Moreover, many families say that General Motors ignored calls regarding vehicles that might have a defect. Families claimed that even though they called the company, they never followed up or responded them in any way.
“We are conducting an unsparing, comprehensive review of the circumstances leading to the ignition switch recall,” a statement released by General Motors said on Monday. “As part of that review we are examining previous claims and our response to them. If anything changes as a result of our review, we will promptly bring that to the attention of regulators,” the statement added.
The company also claimed that they are trying to do their best to make things right in this case.