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GM still making headlines for ignition switch recall, but don’t forget electronic power steering recall

August 26, 2014 by Steven M. Gursten

Many General Motors vehicles having issues with EPS causing car accidents and serious injuries too

GM recall

The General Motors ignition switch recall continues to make headlines, and new facts now show how disturbing this cover-up by some GM execs and GM defense attorneys may in fact be. Federal prosecutors are developing a criminal fraud case hinged on whether GM made knowingly misleading statements about the deadly ignition switch flaw, and are examining activity dating back a decade, according to a recent story on Reuters, “Prosecutors case against GM focuses on misleading statements.”

Meanwhile, there’s been a rolling recall of GM vehicles for ignition switch problems during the last six months. Here’s a list of the recalled vehicles, according to GM:

  • Buick Lacrosse: 2005-09
  • Buick Lucerne: 2006-11
  • Cadillac CTS: 2003-14
  • Cadillac Deville: 2000-05
  • Cadillac DTS: 2006-11
  • Cadillac SRX: 2004-06
  • Chevrolet Camaro: 2010-14
  • Chevrolet Cobalt: 2005-10
  • Chevrolet HHR: 2006-11
  • Chevrolet Impala: 2000-14
  • Chevrolet Malibu: 1997-2005
  • Chevrolet Monte Carlo: 2000-07
  • Oldsmobile Alero: 1999-2004
  • Oldsmobile Intrigue: 1998-2002
  • Pontiac G5: 2007-10
  • Pontiac Grand Am: 1999-2005
  • Pontiac Grand Prix: 2004-08
  • Pontiac Solstice: 2006-10
  • Saturn Ion: 2003-07
  • Saturn Sky: 2007-10

For more information, take a look at my blog post, “Is your car on the GM ignition switch recall list?”

So far, GM has recalled at least 2.6 million cars.

For those of you unfamiliar with the issue, the ignition switch problem could cause ignitions to slip from “run” to “accessory” or “off” positions while being driven. In turn, vehicles could stall, shutting down power brakes and power steering, and preventing airbags from deploying.

General Motors allegedly knew about a defective ignition switch in several of its car models for many years, but hid the problem and stonewalled legal discovery in civil personal injury lawsuits filed by the victims.

As a result, 13 people have died and there have been more than 50 car accidents – and crashes involving GM ignition switch problems continue to occur despite the recall.

I’ve been following the issue closely as the current president of the Motor Vehicle Trial Lawyers Association, and I’ve received several calls from people who may have been involved in car accidents involving some of these GM models on the ignition switch recall list.

But I’m also receiving calls from people who are having problems with their electronic power steering (EPS).  And this EPS issue isn’t receiving nearly the attention it should be getting, in part because the new details from the GM ignition switch litigation have been overshadowing the problem with electronic power steering accidents.

The power steering issue involves car crashes due to loss of steering control. According to a July 23 press release from GM, the steering issues involve Chevrolet Impalas, which are being recalled:

“57,242 2014 Chevrolet Impalas equipped with belt-drive electric power steering (have been recalled). On certain vehicles, customers may experience reduced or no power steering assist at start-up or while driving due to a poor electrical ground connection to the Power Steering Control Module. If power steering is lost, a warning message is displayed on the Driver Information Center and a chime sounds. Steering control can be maintained because the vehicle will revert to manual steering mode, but would require greater driver effort particularly at low vehicle speeds. Paint may have seeped behind the nut on the power steering control module ground stud. Dealers will inspect and clean paint from behind the ground nut, re-torque the nut and update the power steering control module software at no charge. GM is aware of one crash but no injuries or fatalities related to this condition.”

If you’re having problems with your General Motors vehicle, or have questions about the ignition switch recall or the electronic power steering issue, feel free to give our law office a call. We have experienced attorneys on hand here to try to help and give free legal advice.

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