In 2004, ten years before a recall was issued, General Motors knew that its Chevrolet Cobalt’s ignition switch could inadvertently shut off the engine while driving. Additionally, the driver’s power steering and brakes, along with other safety systems such as airbags and anti-lock brakes, would be cut off.
Pediatric nurse Brooke Melton died in 2010, on her 29th birthday, driving a Chevrolet Cobalt she bought new in 2005. Driving on a rainy night in Georgia, her ignition failed and she lost control of her vehicle. General Motors had created a snap-on key cover to try and help with the ignition issue; in 2005, they issued a notice advising dealers to install the part if owners made complaints. Nurse Melton had taken her Cobalt to the dealer for ignition switch problems and picked up her vehicle the day before the fatal crash. Nurse Melton never got one of the snap-on key covers.
This month, General Motors issued a recall on the Chevrolet Cobalt’s switch mechanism. They will replace the switch in 778,619 of its 2005-2007 Cobalts and mechanically similar 2007 Pontiac G5s in the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
When someone is injured or dies in an automobile collision, financial recovery may be available. Such recovery is particularly important when permanent, life changing injuries are incurred. It is important to contact someone who understands the intricacies of the injured party’s right to recover.
Abraham Watkins offers a free consultation to anyone wishing to pursue a claim for such injuries or fatalities.