GM Is Under Investigation For a Potentially Dangerous Airbag Problem

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When purchasing a car, truck, or SUV, owners expect that the car will have a few standard safety features, including dependable airbags that will deploy in the event of a crash. Unfortunately, GM is being investigated for a widespread airbag issue that has already resulted in a few crashes and injuries.
The details of the investigation, and whether it will lead to a full recall, remain unclear. Learn more about the investigation and whether a recall can impact your car insurance below.

GM’s airbag issue investigation

Autotrader recently released an article that discusses a major airbag issue in select GM vehicles. At least 15 owners have come forward and stated that their GM vehicle’s airbag malfunction indicator lights are on, and there are several allegations that driver-side airbags are not deploying properly in car accidents. This has led to at least eight injuries so far.
Autoblog reports that GM releases a statement of the defect in March 2021, attributing the issue to “rust particles in the connection terminal interface of the driver’s airbag inflator.” There have not been any reports of official recalls yet, as GM is waiting on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to fully investigate the issue and determine whether a recall is necessary.
GM and other car manufacturers have seen several recalls in recent years, some due to faulty airbag inflators built by Takata that can spontaneously inflate and release debris toward drivers and passengers. This newest recall doesn’t seem to be related to the same Takata issue at this time.

How many vehicles are affected by the investigation?

So far, the NHTSA is investigating almost 750,000 GM vehicles from 2020 and 2021 model years. These include the following vehicles:
  • Cadillac CT4 and CT5
  • Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV, and Escalade XT5
  • Chevrolet Silverado, Suburban, and Tahoe
  • GMC Sierra, Yukon, and Yukon XL
If a recall is ever issued on these vehicles, GM will attempt to contact the owners to bring in their vehicle for repairs or replacements of parts free of charge.
It’s unclear how long it will take the NHTSA to investigate and decide on the matter, but you can check to see if your vehicle has been affected periodically by entering its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or the make and model into the NHTSA‘s website search function.

Can recalls or investigations impact car insurance?

When a car undergoes a recall and needs repairs or parts replaced, the manufacturer typically contacts as many vehicle owners as possible to bring in their vehicles for repairs free of charge. As a result, repairs are not done through your insurer, so recalls typically don’t impact your insurance.
This system works well for those who purchased their vehicles from a dealership, but manufacturers may not have contact information for those who received the car as a gift or got the car from a private or independent seller. As a result, it’s always important to try to be informed about the latest recalls, especially if one of those three scenarios applies to you.
Car insurance can come into play with a recall if you were unaware of a recall that ultimately caused you to get into an accident or undergo an injury. Your insurance company may be able to provide you with reimbursements relatively quickly and then seek reimbursement from the car manufacturer without you having to be involved.
Having car insurance is always a good idea, even in situations where it may not seem relevant on the surface. If you’re in need of car insurance, check out Jerry, an AI-based car insurance tool that can help you find just what you need in no time.

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