Paul Krueger Law Firm, A Professional Corporation

Faulty GM auto part causes 13 deaths


Companies that manufacture consumer products have a responsibility to the public to deliver safe products at all times. Despite the need to reduce costs or make profits, safety should never suffer. Unfortunately, as many people in Portland and around the country know all too well, this philosophy is not always followed and many defective products do make it to the marketplace. Product liability concerns can translate into issues of public safety.

Such was the case for General Motors when it proceeded with a part in many vehicles that turned out to be faulty. A recent media article reported on the mounting publicity and awareness of the situation that has left 13 people dead due to the defective automotive product. According to the news story, a product cost of 90 cents per piece along with a retooling cost estimated at $400,000 prevented the automotive manufacturer from changing the part in the manufacturing process.

The vehicles were made during a time when General Motors faced serious financial problems, including a potential bankruptcy. Critics say that such facts should still not have prevented the change. A hearing that took place in Washington, D.C. on the matter recently indicated that, in all, the change would have resulted in a 57 cent price increase.  The current CEO has apparently promised to investigate the matter internally. Meanwhile, both lawsuits and an investigation by Congress will also ensue.

When a consumer is put in danger due to the actions or lack thereof of a manufacturer, they deserve justice. If you believe that you or someone you love has been affected by a defective product, you may wish to talk to an attorney to learn about your options for compensation.

Source: CBS News, “Why didn’t GM fix faulty switches? A per-car cost of less than $1,” Aimee Picchi, April 2, 2014

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