(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) released the following statement in a response to a letter General Motors (GM) sent to its customers stating that “the ignition key is too easy to turn” and that being “jostled or jolted” could cause recently recalled vehicles with faulty ignition switches to malfunction. In testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance, GM CEO Mary Barra stated that rough road conditions, jarring, and other impact related events would not affect these recalled vehicles as long as drivers did not have added weight on their key rings. The letter also stated that it will take GM “a number of months to build enough parts to fix every car” that requires repair.
“I welcome GM's belated recognition that its defective cars are seriously dangerous when jostled or jolted – as I have repeatedly urged that the company acknowledge. GM should more urgently warn owners to avoid driving these risky cars until they're repaired and switch to a loaner vehicle from their dealer if repairs cannot happen right away. Prompt action, clear warnings, and quick production of replacement parts for dealers will save lives. I continue to demand GM provide up-to-date information about how many parts have been delivered and how many are still necessary, as well as to release the documentation of the safety testing conducted by their engineers, as CEO Mary Barra pledged to do in her testimony before the Senate Commerce Committee.”