Lawsuits have been filed against full sized GM SUVs and trucks that were manufactured between the years 2014-2018 after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened an investigation in the braking systems after a report of multiple crashes.
GM announced that it is recalling those vehicles. Nearly 3.5 million SUVs and trucks have been recalled to repair a defective vacuum pump that could affect the ability of the vehicles to brake and lead to a crash. Currently, it is known that the defect has been connected with 113 accidents and 13 injuries. The recall covers 3.46 million 2014-2018 GM vehicles in the U.S., including certain Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Silverado, Chevrolet Tahoe, GMC Suburban, and GMC Yukon vehicles. Here is an article from Consumer Reports outlining this recall.
Initially GM indicated that the defect was with an electronic software patch, however, it now appears that the mechanical vacuum pump is the real cause of the defect. The NHTSA posted internal documents from GM that reflect that the amount of vacuum generated by the vacuum assist pump decreases over time. This pump is lubricated by oil that passes through a filter, before entering the pump. This filter (screen) accumulates sludge and debris which in turn causes the pump to lack the oil needed, ultimately causing the hydraulic braking system to fail.
The NHTSA states: “vehicles may experience brake boost failure, which would require increased brake pedal effort, leading to a hard brake pedal feel, and potentially increased stopping distance.”
Drivers have been consistently reporting a stiff brake pedal that requires multiple times the normal leg force needed to depress the brake pedal and activate the hydraulic brakes. Some drivers report a simultaneous dashboard alert that the brake assist system requires servicing.
More than 2 months after announcing a recall in Canada of 310,000 vehicles to repair the same problem, General Motors announced the US recall.
GM is attempting to “fix” the problem with a software reprogramming of the electronic brake control module. However, it is believed that the brake system failure is mechanical not electronic and can only be repaired with a stronger mechanical pump.
If you have a 2014 to 2018 GM vehicle including the Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Silverado, Chevrolet Taho, GMC Suburban or GMC Yukon contact our office for more information. Sean Keith has been representing those injured by the negligence of others for over 27 years. If you have a question, call, text or email and visit our website at www.keithlawgroup.com.