General Motors recently announced that they plan to upgrade the steel structure and liquid cooling system in Chevrolet Volt models to alleviate growing concerns about the Volt being prone to catching fire after severe accidents. Each Volt features a 400-pound lithium-ion battery. In some accidents, the impact has caused the coolant system for the battery to rupture, resulting in the battery becoming overheated and catching fire. After receiving complaints about the fires, the federal government performed some safety tests on the Volt. During testing in June 2011, a Volt caught fire after a crash that targeted the battery and cooling system. Another Volt caught fire in November 2011 after a government crash test, which prompted the investigation into the safety of Volt models.
Responding swiftly to government and Volt owners’ concerns, GM officials cooperated with federal safety regulators and were reportedly working hard on a solution to the problems. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the federal agency that is investigating the fire problems, reported that GM’s fix "should address the issue." However, they reported that they are keeping their investigation open until further testing reveals that the problem has been fixed. GM is calling the fix a "voluntary enhancement," and reiterated that neither the Volt nor its battery or cooling system was being recalled. GM has reportedly contacted Volt owners and invited them to bring their cars to their dealer to have the enhancements installed at no cost to them.
Mary Barra, G.M.’s Senior Vice President for Global Product Development, recently issued a statement about the upgrades. She said, "We are choosing to go the extra mile to ensure our customers’ peace of mind." She added that the changes would make the car "even safer, because the Volt is safe."
On December 22, 2011, the NHTSA conducted crash tests on an upgraded Volt, which resulted in no coolant leakage and no damage to the battery.
Florida auto accident attorney James O. Cunningham has seen many different automobiles recalled for serious safety problems over the last 35 years and has assisted numerous clients injured by defective cars, trucks and other vehicles. While the Chevrolet Volt was not the subject of a recall and it appears that GM moved swiftly and responsibly to correct a potentially serious problem with this model, many automakers have tried to avoid taking responsibility and placed the safety of their customers at risk. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by a defective product and you have questions about your legal options, call James O. Cunningham at 888-425-2004 or 407-425-2000 to schedule a consultation. Call today to get the counsel and legal representation you deserve from an Orlando personal injury lawyer with decades of experience.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a vehicle accident, call toll-free at 1-888-FLA-Auto (1-888-352-2886).
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