A class-action law firm is going after General Motors for the automaker’s handling of defective ignition switches.
GM has recalled 1.6 million small cars worldwide, including about 235,000 cars sold in this country because of the malfunction.
The lawsuit was filed on Mar. 19 by Canadian firm Merchant Law Group LLP. The goal of the case is to compensate people across Canada for defects in various small car models used between 2003 and 2007. GM is being criticized for having withheld knowledge from the public of possible ignition problems.
GM announced last month that ignition switches in older models of the Chevrolet Cobalt, Pontiac G5s, Saturn Ion, Chevrolet HHR, Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky need repairs.
On Mar. 17, a new recall was issued covering 1.5 million larger vehicles, including 70,437 in Canada due to faulty air bags and seat belts.
GM says the ignition switches do not hold up well under stress from heavy dangling keys. CBS reported that if key chains are bumped or people drive on rough surfaces the ignition could switch from the “run” position to “accessory” or “off.”
The adjustment cuts off the power-assisted steering and brakes and could cause drivers to lose control.
GM says the glitch has been linked to 12 deaths, NBC reports.