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GM At Odds With Feds Over Recall-Related Documents

General Motors says it has "fully cooperated" with federal authorities in connection with the recall of 2.6 million cars for defective ignition switches and other problems.

But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration disagrees and says it will fine the automaker $7,000 for each day it misses a deadline to answer 107 questions that passed on April 4.

"We will continue to provide responses and facts as soon as they become available and hope to go about this in a constructive manner," GM's statement said. "We will do so with a goal of being accurate as well as timely."

Michigan Radio's Tracy Samilton reports that NHTSA says GM failed to answer a full third of the questions.

The Associated Press reports:

"In a letter to GM's top lawyer sent Tuesday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration imposed its maximum allowable fine for the delay of $7,000 per day. That adds up to $28,000 so far, and the fines will continue to accrue until GM responds.

"According to the letter, GM was granted extra time to answer "technical engineering questions" posed by the agency. But NHTSA contends many of the questions GM failed to answer are not engineering ones, and should have been answered by the deadline."

In GM's statement, the company said it produced "nearly 21,000 documents totaling over 271,000 pages through a production process that spans a decade and over 5 million documents from 75 individual custodians and additional sources."

"Even NHTSA recognizes the breadth of its inquiry and has agreed, in several instances with GM, to a rolling production schedule of documents past the April 3 deadline," the automaker said.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.
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