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A General Motors car dealership is seen in this photo taken in New York, the United States/XINHUA-File

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GM adds another 92,000 vehicles to ignition switch recall

A General Motors car dealership is seen in this photo taken in New York, the United States/XINHUA-File

A General Motors car dealership is seen in this photo taken in New York, the United States/XINHUA-File

WASHINGTON, United States, Jan 2 – General Motors on Thursday announced a recall of more than 92,000 additional vehicles over ignition switch problems blamed for 42 deaths.

The largest US automaker has already recalled millions of cars over the defect, which could switch off a car’s power steering and safety airbags while it is in motion.

It is also facing investigations by the US Congress, regulators and the Justice Department over why it waited more than a decade after first uncovering the ignition-switch problem to start recalling cars.

The latest recall affects some 83,572 trucks in the United States from the 2011-2012 model year, as well as vehicles from 2007 to 2014 that were repaired with faulty parts.

Including vehicles in Canada and Mexico, the total number of recalls comes to 92,221.

Models affected include the Chevrolet Silverado, Avalanche, Tahoe, and Suburban, as well as the Cadillac Escalade and the GMC Sierra and Yukon.

Fewer than 500 vehicles are expected to have the defect, GM said in a statement, adding that, as of December 10, 2014, the company did not know of any accidents in the named models related to the problem.

GM said it discovered the issue through an internal review following returns of parts under warranty.

The company has set up an independent compensation fund for victims of the defect, run by attorney Kenneth Feinberg, with plans to pay $1 million per fatality plus $300,000 to each surviving spouse and possible beneficiary.

The GM fund was to accept compensation claims through December 31, but has since extended that deadline.

Lawyers for many victims have already filed a number of class-action suits that could cost the company far more than its promised payouts under the compensation program.

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But the program offers victims the promise of earlier payouts, if they give up their right to sue once their compensation claim has been accepted.

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