In November, 2014, General Motors recalled more than 2 million Chevrolet Cobalts and other small cars with faulty ignition switches. These faulty ignitions could unexpectedly turn off the engine, which would then disable power steering, power breaks, and the airbags, drastically increasing the likelihood of serious auto accidents. Recently, in July 2015, the death toll from the faulty ignition switch issue rose to 121. On top of this, this defect has also lead to 14 serious injuries and 237 minor injuries in related motor vehicle crashes. In 2014, GM had to pay the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) $35 million, due to the fact that GM failed to report the ignition switch recall in a timely manner.
According to the Detroit Free Press, this week, Mark Rosekind, the federal government's chief auto safety official, said that GM's ignition switch crisis "triggered change at NHTSA." Rosekind said that he wants the agency to have a more direct and more clear emphasis on safety. Rosekind met with reporters in Detroit, Michigan on Monday, July 20th, and discussed a wide range of issues pertaining to this recall. Currently, he is trying to convince Congress and voters that NHTSA needs more money and more people to do its job. The agency wants to increase their budget, in order to triple the spending for investigating defects, in order to improve safety, reduce crashes, prevent injuries, and save lives.
Rosekind also mentioned that he wants to use advanced technology in order to make vehicles safer and reduce auto accident injuries. He mentioned that he's trying to sort out what new regulations and guidelines are needed as car companies start to build cars with new technology, including automated and self-driving cars.
'Given the resources we have, we're going to use all available tools to get things done,' he said. 'Having said all of that that, I don't mind telling you that I also think one of our agendas clearly – because I keep talking about this – is to try to get the auto industry more proactive. Everybody is reactive, even NHTSA.'
If you have been injured in a car crash involving a recall or defective car, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC. Our accident attorneys are here to help you with questions about insurance problems, medical expenses, and pain and suffering benefits as allowed by Michigan law. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM today for a free consultation.