GM releases internal probe of recall
Detroit, MI (CNN) - The head of GM is admitting her company let its customers down. She announced the findings of an internal probe of the company's failure to recall cars tied to at least 13 deaths. The new report might do little to help families of the dead find closure.
Healing has been hard for Ken and Beth Melton.
Ken Melton – Daughter Killed in 2009 Car Crash: "I would gladly give my last breath just to hug her and tell her I love her one more time."
Their 29-year-old daughter Brooke died behind the wheel of her 2005 Chevy Cobalt four years ago. The couple later learned an ignition switch problem with her car was to blame.
Ken Melton: "Enough of trying to say we didn't do anything wrong."
Mary Barra, GM's CEO, addressed employees at a town hall in Detroit. A three-month internal probe found: "A pattern of incompetence and neglect" within GM.
Mary Barra – GM CEO: "Our job is clear: To build high-quality, safe vehicles. In this case, with these vehicles, we simply didn't do our job. We failed these customers and we must face up to it, and we must learn from it."
Barra says 15 employees were dismissed and five more have been disciplined. GM admitted in February that its engineers first knew about the ignition switch problem as early as 2004, but it did not recall the 2.6 million cars affected until earlier this year.
Mary Barra: "Repeatedly, individuals failed to disclose critical pieces of information that could have changed the lives of those impacted by the faulty ignition switch"
Brooke Melton isn't on General Motors' list of 13 ignition switch-related deaths, according to Barra. The company is only counting head-on crashes where air bags did not deploy. Federal regulators say the death toll may grow.