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Motors and regulators over their decadelong failure to correct a defective ignition switch, a new accounting of federal crash data shows that 303 people died after the air bags failed to deploy on two of the models that were recalled last month.
The calculation of the air bag failures, by the Friedman Research Corp., adds to the mounting reports of problems that went unheeded before General Motors announced last month that it was recalling more than 1.6 million cars worldwide because of the defective switch. GM has linked 12 deaths to the defective switch in the two models analyzed, the 2003-5 Chevrolet Cobalts and 2003-7 Saturn Ions, as well as four other models.