M. Carmen Benavides, the director of field product investigations and evaluations with GM, has been reassigned within the safety division of the company. At any other time, no one would be covering this shift in personnel, but this development comes right on the heels of a massive recall in which the ignition devices of several GM vehicles were malfunctioning. According to some reports, GM was well aware of this default, and chose to ignore it. This malfunction has now been linked to 13 deaths, and GM is under fire about how it handled the situation.
GM insists that this is not a demotion, and Ms. Benavides is not being punished for her handling of the incident. They have stated that they shifted Ms. Benavides to a different position in order to better serve GM’s safety division. This is hard to believe for many, seeing as Ms. Benavides name is plastered all over documents dealing with the incident and correspondence with NHTSA. Benavides has been moved to director of safety improvement initiatives, and her old post at GM has been replaced by Brain Latouf.
GM is now under investigation by NHTSA, the SEC, the DoJ, US Congress, and a number of US States. With heat like this on GM, we can probably expect to see a heavy fine placed on the company as well as several more “shifts” and “retirements” within the company.
Source: Automotive News