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You Stay Classy, General Motors

Bum car...General Motors is trying to negotiate its way out of paying damages to victims of known defects in its vehicles, a precedent set by Chrysler in its bankruptcy negotiations. "If any defect in a GM car causes an accident, or injures someone or kills the occupants, there would be no recourse, no opportunity for compensation or to make a claim in a lawsuit. It would affect every single driver of a GM vehicle," Joanne Doroshow, executive director of the Centre for Justice and Democracy, told Inter Press Service. " Each year, between 500 and 1,000 people are harmed or killed in GM and Chrysler vehicles, according to the Centre for Auto Safety," writes Adrianne Appel, before putting a human face on those statistics:

Robert Doss, of Arizona, filed a lawsuit on behalf of his eight-year-old son, Shaun. Shaun became a paraplegic after the seatbelt in his father's Chrysler Dodge Durango failed during an accident. Their lawsuit will not go forward now, Doss told reporters Wednesday, while visiting Congress.

Jeremy Warriner, of Indiana, whose legs were burned beyond saving three years ago when brake fluid spilled and ignited during an accident in his Jeep Wrangler, said the personal injury lawsuit he filed against Chrysler also is defunct since the bankruptcy deal.

Chrysler used U.S. bankruptcy law to "sweep the people who have been injured by Chrysler products under the rug and walk away as if it never happened," Warriner said.

Source: Inter Press Service