Did GM’s Seat Belt Recall Fix the Problem? Feds Intend to Find Out

A half-decade after General Motors recalled 1,339,355 full-size crossovers due to a risk of seat belt failure, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched an investigation into the models.

Following reports sent in from owners, the federal agency is concerned that the 2014 recall did not fix the problem of detached front seat belt cables in 2009-2014 vehicles.

The models recalled included the Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia, and Saturn Outlook. In affected models, the steel cable tethering the front belts to the vehicle could break, leading to a dangerous situation in the event of a crash. The recall began in July 2014.

While GM’s full-sizers have moved on, with the Acadia downsizing and the Outlook nearing extinction (alongside its parent brand), the problem GM thought had been addressed five years ago has cropped up again.

As reported by the Associated Press, the NHTSA probe came after owners of previously recalled vehicles made complaints to the agency. In one case, an Ohio man said a front seat belt cable in his 2010 Traverse snapped as his wife was trying to fasten her belt.

GM, when contacted, reportedly told the owner that the snapped cable was the result of “normal wear and tear.” The NHTSA seems to take a dim view of this, in light of the model’s history and the three other complaints. In a statement, the agency said it would run tests on the replacement cables to determine their durability.

The automaker claims it is cooperating with the investigation.

a version of this report first appeared on TTAC

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