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GM Recalls 243,000 Vehicles Due To Seat Belt Issues

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seatbeltAuto giant General Motors (GM) issued a recall of 243,000 vehicles, last Tuesday, due to issues with the vehicles’ second row of seat belts. A variety of SUVs and “crossover vehicles” from both 2009 and 2010 — including Chevrolet Traverse, Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook — are on the list of recalled vehicles. With the exception of a few thousand sold in Canada, China, Saudi Arabia and Mexico, the recalled vehicles were all purchased in the United States.

Nick Bunkley, a writer for The New York Times, shares the auto maker’s statement on the recall:

G.M. said in a statement that dealers would inspect the seat belts ‘for damage that in rare cases could make an occupant think the belt is properly latched when it isn’t.’ The damage can occur in the second row of the three-row vehicles as the seat is returned to an upright position after being folded flat.

‘Because of the potential for a false-latch condition, we want customers to return their vehicles to have the recall repair performed as soon as possible,’ Jeff Boyer, G.M.’s executive director of safety, said.

David Bailey and John Crawley, reporters for Reuters, give us some more details in an article in The Vancouver Sun:

The problem was discovered during warranty returns, and any damage was cosmetic in the vast majority of cases, GM said in documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

There are no known cases of belts failing in a crash, GM said.

Even so, this is certainly something to be wary of. As we often discuss here on the Colorado Accident Law Blog, if you are involved in a car accident, wearing a properly functioning seat belt can save your life.

All in all, 2010 has been a rough year for GM, as this is already their third recall of the year. Last March, GM recalled 1.3 million Chevrolet Cobalts and Pontiacs once federal investigators received reports of power steering failures. Just two months later in June they issued a recall for 1.5 million vehicles because of a defective heated windshield washer system. The windshield wiper problem caused at least five fires that have been documented.

Image by amandabhslater, used under its Creative Commons license


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