GM Product Liability Case Grows

Our Atlanta product liability lawyers are following the frightening story about GM’s defective products in their cars. This story of the dangerous defects in GM cars came to national attention partly because of cases like the lawsuit over the death of a Georgia woman in 2010.

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Brooke Melton, a pediatric nurse, died on her 29th birthday when her 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt’s ignition switch went from “run” to “accessory” while she was driving, which caused the engine to die suddenly. The Melton’s settled with GM last year, but now mounting evidence of the defects in their cars has become more and more apparent. The Melton’s asked GM to rescind their settlement but were refused and have filed a new lawsuit against GM and a Georgia car dealership in Cobb County, claiming that GM fraudulently covered up evidence and its corporate representative committed perjury in their first case. The Melton’s say if they knew what they know now, they would never have settled the case. They claim that it was fraudulent to deny anyone at GM knew of the problem with the ignition switches. A GM engineer testified he did not know about a design change in the switch, which GM has since admitted is false as the company admits to knowing about the problem for more than ten years. GM denies any fraud in dealing with the Melton’s though, so the Melton’s stated, “The response by GM and its lawyers validates our decision. We are hopeful that this new lawsuit will uncover who at GM knew about the design change and why Brooke was never told.”
Since the Melton’s first case, GM recalled 2.59 million vehicles with this problem, and just this week announced the recall of 2.4 million more vehicles. This brings the total amount of GM cars recalled this year for a variety of problems, including faulty seat belts, transmissions, and air bags as well as fire hazard issues, to 13 million vehicles, which is more than the total number of vehicles GM sold in 2013. GM so far admits that the problem caused 13 deaths, but does not count Brooke Melton’s death among that number. The 13 admitted deaths were front crashes where the airbags didn’t deploy, while Brooke’s car was hit on the side after her engine cut off.

Depending on the outcome of the Melton’s second lawsuit, it could pave the way for more injured families to sue GM to reopen their cases after settlement. Already there are hundreds of lawsuits pending over these serious and deadly product defects in numerous GM car models. The Melton’s attorneys hope to depose new GM CEO Mary Barra, Jim Federico, the former director of global vehicle inspection, as well as approximately a dozen GM engineers.

Atlanta Product Liability Attorneys

If you or a loved one has been hurt by a defective product, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. To discuss the specifics of your case and any steps to move forward in legal avenues to help pay for any injuries and suffering, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter as soon as possible at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation today.

Photo Credit: AJ Hill – Blacklight Propaganda Photography via Compfight cc

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