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GM Ignition Switch Defect Goes Undetected

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GM Ignition Switch Defect Goes Undetected

Posted on October 31, 2015 | Written By: iadminlaw

There is a question as to whether NHTSA investigates and reviews the reports it receives thoroughly enough. There is also a question as to whether NHTSA ascertains the accuracy and integrity of the reports they receive from automakers.

A 2006 GM report of a fatal crash submitted information that conflicted with a report from the Wisconsin State Patrol which keyed in on the ignition switch and airbags as being responsible for the accident.

The codes GM is using in the reports are in question. For example, the code, “Electrical” could be substituted for “Steering”, using a more appropriate code.

GM received a letter from a consumer regarding an ignition switch in 2005.

ODI contractors labeled the codes “Unknown or Other”, and “Exterior Lighting: Headlights: Switch” as opposed to the more applicable terms, “Electrical Systems: Ignition: Switch.” This error in coding occurred twice.

NHTA’s consumer reporting procedures don’t help the matter much. The procedures are often confusing and don’t explian how to circumlocute the reporting system.

Additionally, NHTSA is said to receive any where from 40,000 to 80,000 letters per year regarding complaints about vehicles. There is only one staff designated to review them. He only gets an opportunity to review about 330 complaints in a half day. Only about 10% of the letters make it through the first screening process.

One consumer sent in a letter in which she described the ignition problem after troubleshooting it. This letter was sent in 2005.

The car was said to have been likely to turn off while in motion.

There were also reporting dificulties. GM switched to a later form of Microsoft word which NHTSA couldn’t read. Thirteen reports failed to be processed as a result of this inconsistency.

One report was listed as neverr having been read.

Until 2013, no documentation was required for the decline of the pursuit of a complaint. After that time, very few made it though the screening process.

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