Bob Beauprez

Is the Obama Administration so obsessed with green energy and battery operated cars that they would compromise consumer safety?  Maybe so.   

In recent weeks, news of several battery fires in crash tested Chevy Volts has raised safety concerns about the technology.  The government has announced a “safety probe” into the problem.  The Volt is manufactured by General Motors – the same GM over which Barack Obama seized control, bailed out, and installed his own management. 

The Obama Administration has poured $5 billion into electric car technology, but as the Washington Post reports today, taxpayers “will not see a return on their money soon, if ever,” as plug-in car technology struggles to catch on in the market place.  Instead of creating “thousands of jobs” as promised by Obama, the nascent electric car industry is laying off workers and closing plants.  Consumers aren’t exactly rushing to dealers to embrace the new technology, either.  According to the Washington Post, 2011 sales are anemic; just two-tenths of one percent of the market despite heavy subsidies and media hype. 

On the heels of the Solyndra debacle and still unfolding scandal surrounding the DOE green energy loan program, Obama & Co. didn’t need another public relations green-energy crisis to manage in an election year – but they may have created one.

AutoGuide.com is reporting that General Motors and NHSTA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, knew of the battery fire problem with the Volt at least five months before disclosing the problem to the public or even alerting their dealers.  Here’s an excerpt:

"Apparently, way back in June, General Motors heard about a Volt fire that happened three weeks after said vehicle was crash tested, yet it wasn’t until November that the company, or NHTSA disclosed there was a potential problem, urging both dealers and customers to drain the battery pack immediately following an accident."

"As a result the public relations nightmare surrounding Chevy’s halo vehicle appears to be deepening, though a good deal of the blame in this case also rests with NHTSA."


Bob Beauprez

Bob Beauprez is a former Member of Congress and is currently the editor-in-chief of A Line of Sight, an online policy resource. Prior to serving in Congress, Mr. Beauprez was a dairy farmer and community banker. He and his wife Claudia reside in Lafayette, Colorado. You may contact him at: http://bobbeauprez.com/contact/
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