A representative of the compensation fund for victims of GM’s ignition switch scandal has suggested that a great many more injuries and deaths can and will be linked to the automaker over the coming months. In total, around 2.6 million GM vehicles were recalled due to the faulty ignition switches which have to date been blamed for 51 deaths and 77 injuries – both of which Camille Biros expects to see increase “absolutely” as more claims are processed.
Ms. Biros stated that as the January 31 deadline for claims approached and passed, a massive influx in filings took the total from 3,068 to 4,180 in as little as a week. On the whole, January brought about the filing of around 1,600 claims which could see the number of injuries and deaths linked to GM’s faulty ignition switches rise dramatically.
In addition, more claims that were time-stamped prior to January 31 but have yet to be received and recorded could see the above-mentioned figures swell even further. Processing of the claims and thus a more definite final figure is not expected to be complete and published until the spring.
When General Motors first began recalling vehicles affected by faulty ignition switches last year, it had been 11 years since the problem was first reported. Where present, the fault could lead to the ignition switch slipped at random, causing the vehicle to stall or switching off airbag safety systems.