General Motors says that seven more deaths have been linked to a faulty ignition switch recall, and four other vehicles have been added to the list. WAFB reported on Feb. 25, 2014, that the added vehicles have upped the death count from six to 13, and GM is looking to recall over a half a million more.
The four other GM vehicles added to the recall use the same switch as the Pontiac G5 and Chevy Cobalt cars that were recalled on Feb. 13, 2014.
The number of crashes has also been upped from 22 to 31. With the addition of the more than 588,000 vehicles recalled; it now ups the number to a total of 1.37 million throughout all of North America.
Those added to the GM recall are:
- 2003-07 Saturn Ion
- 2006-07 Chevrolet HHR
- 2006-07 Pontiac Solstice
- 2006-07 Saturn Sky
GM states that the ignition defect allows it to move unexpectedly from "run" to "accessory" if it is jarred strongly or pulled by something such as a heavy key chain. When that happens, it shuts off the engine and disables the front air bags.
That loss of air bags is the focus safety issue in the General Motors recall.
"The chronology shows that the process employed to examine this phenomenon was not as robust as it should have been," said GM North America President Alan Batey. "Today's GM is committed to doing business differently and better. We will take an unflinching look at what happened and apply lessons learned here to improve going forward."
Batey said of GM, "We are deeply sorry and we are working to address this issue as quickly as we can."
Similar complaints have been made about some other vehicles from GM, but they have not been officially added to the recall. Two HHR owners stated air bags did not deploy in front-impact crashes.
Another issue is a safer switch which has a different part number and was installed in all of the vehicles starting in 2008. None of those vehicles have been recalled at all.