Recall Alert: Are the Airbags in GM Vehicles Safe?

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In a bit of déjà vu, GM is recalling 4.3 million vehicles due to an airbag defect. However, this recall has nothing to do with the Takata airbag recall that has dominated the news cycle over the last year. Instead, this is a separate issue that has to do with the airbags in GM vehicles containing defective software.

What Is Wrong with the Airbags in GM Vehicles?

According to a report in USA Today, most of the vehicles GM is recalling due to the airbag issue are in the US. Reportedly, the airbag software defect has been linked to three injuries and one death. Apparently, GM first found out about the problem with its airbags in May of this year. At that time, there was an accident involving a 2014 Chevy Silverado in which the vehicle’s airbags failed to deploy when they should have. Following the incident, GM notified airbag manufacturer Delphi. Both GM and Delphi then ran tests on the airbags and accompanying software, which eventually led to a recall being issued in early September.

The vehicles involved in the recall include Cadillac, Buick, GMC and Chevrolets from model years 2014 through 2017:

  • 2014 through 2016 Chevrolet Spark EV, Chevrolet SS and Buick LaCrosse
  • 2014 through 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Buick Encore, Chevrolet Caprice, GMC Sierra 1500, Chevrolet Trax and Chevrolet Corvette
  • 2015 through 2017 Cadillac Escalade ESV, Chevrolet Tahoe, Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Suburban, GMC Sierra HD, Chevrolet Silverado HD, GMC Yukon and GMC Yukon XL

GM began notifying its customers as soon as it issued the recall and will fix the airbag problem free of charge. The defect can be repaired with a software update rather than any actual mechanical issue having to be fixed. Consumers can take their vehicles to GM dealerships to be repaired. Each of GM’s dealers have been provided with the software update, so repairing vehicles should be a quick and easy process.

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