Sunday, June 08, 2014

GM CEO Fires 15 after investigation into fatal recall reveals neglect

This should have never happened. It is unacceptable.”

Those were the words from General Motors CEO Mary Barra, who yesterday fired 15 people – more than half of them top executives – following an internal inquiry into a recall of cars with a faulty ignition switch.

The decade-long recall has been linked to at least 13 fatal crashes and eventually led to the recall of 2.6 million Chevrolet Cobalts, Saturn Irons and a number of other models fitted with the faulty switch.

Announcing the findings of the internal report, Barra said she had fired numerous people and disciplined five others, after concluding they were responsible for the “pattern of incompetence and neglect”.

In a global town hall meeting addressing the internal report and its findings, Barra said former US Attorney Anton R. Valukas had found no internal, deliberate cover up by the company in relation to the recall.

Rather, Barra blamed a break-down of company culture for the 11-year “history of failures”, saying numerous individuals did not accept responsibility for what had happened.

“The report highlights a company that operated in silos, with a number of individuals looking for reasons not to act, instead of finding ways to protect our customers,” she said at the meeting, which was broadcast live.