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GM reviewing exploding sunroofs

Motorists and passengers can suffer personal injury in car accidents caused by another negligent or reckless driver. Defective equipment can also be potentially dangerous. GM is conducting a review after a Consumer Reports investigation claimed that hundreds of sunroofs from numerous vehicle manufacturers shattered without warning across the country.

Consumer Report's investigation, released last fall, contained an analysis of consumer complaints concerning almost 900 incidents with 208 models and 35 brands. Approximately 70 percent of the reported incidents took place in the last six years. During this time, panoramic sunroofs became more popular.

Even though this problem was spread across manufacturers, Consumer Reports found that it was more prevalent with Kia and Hyundai cars in comparison to their overall market share. It contacted 18 manufacturers, including GM along with industry trade groups and members of Congress seeking better sunroof designs and more action to resolve this safety issue.

According to Consumer Union, GM is taking strong first steps and should continue to build on its momentum with addressing this issue. GM said that it complies with recognized worldwide glazing standards. Consumer Report's analysis of available data revealed that Honda and Volvo were the only manufacturers which had better results than GM. It said that it does not believe there is evidence warranting a recall of its vehicles.

Consumer Reports safety advocates recommend that any manufacturer should issue a recall if it has a pattern of shattering incidents. They also asked that regulators' Kia Sorrento investigation should be expanded to include other manufacturers and models. Additionally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration should not wait for serious injuries to conduct this inquiry. Finally, the entire auto industry should establish more stringent safety standards for these sunroofs before regulators act.

NHTSA finished four defective sunroof investigations since 2004 which led to recalls for the 2012 Hyundai Veloster and the 2004 Nissan Maxima. The 2011-2013 Kia Sorento is the only vehicle currently involved in an official NHTSA investigation.

An attorney can help a victim of these defects and other car accidents seek compensation. They may help assure that a lawsuit is timely filed.

Source: Consumer Reports, "GM says it will review safety of panoramic sunroofs," By Jeff Plungis, Jan. 22, 2018

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