Home Page About Us Contribute




Escort, Inc.



Tweets by @CrittendenAuto






By accessing/using The Crittenden Automotive Library/CarsAndRacingStuff.com, you signify your agreement with the Terms of Use on our Legal Information page. Our Privacy Policy is also available there.

General Motors, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Chevrolet Volt

General Motors, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Claude H. Harris
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
January 21, 2014


[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 13 (Tuesday, January 21, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 3471-3472]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-00923]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2013-0133; Notice 1]


General Motors, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of 
Inconsequential Noncompliance

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Receipt of petition.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: General Motors, LLC (GM) has determined that certain model 
year (MY) 2011, 2012 and 2013 Chevrolet Volt passenger cars sold with 
windshield sunshades as a ``Limited Personalization Option,'' do not 
fully comply with paragraph S4.3 of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard (FMVSS) No. FMVSS 302, Flammability of Interior Materials. GM 
has filed an appropriate report dated August 27, 2013, pursuant to 49 
CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports.

DATES: The closing date for comments on the petition is February 20, 
2014.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written data, 
views, and arguments on this petition. Comments must refer to the 
docket and notice number cited at the beginning of this notice and be 
submitted by any of the following methods:
     Mail: Send comments by mail addressed to: U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.
     Hand Deliver: Deliver comments by hand to: U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. The 
Docket Section is open on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. except 
Federal Holidays.
     Electronically: Submit comments electronically by: logging 
onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Web site at http://www.regulations.gov/. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments. Comments may also be faxed to (202) 493-2251.
    Comments must be written in the English language, and be no greater 
than 15 pages in length, although there is no limit to the length of 
necessary attachments to the comments. If comments are submitted in 
hard copy form, please ensure that two copies are provided. If you wish 
to receive confirmation that your comments were received, please 
enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with the comments. Note that 
all comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.
    Documents submitted to a docket may be viewed by anyone at the 
address and times given above. The documents may also be viewed on the 
Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by following the online 
instructions for accessing the dockets. DOT's complete Privacy Act 
Statement is available for review in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000, (65 FR 19477-78).
    The petition, supporting materials, and all comments received 
before the close of business on the closing date indicated below will 
be filed and will be considered. All comments and supporting materials 
received after the closing date will also be filed and will be 
considered to the extent possible. When the petition is granted or 
denied, notice of the decision will be published in the Federal 
Register pursuant to the authority indicated below.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. GM's Petition

    Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) (see implementing rule 
at 49 CFR part 556), GM submitted a petition for an exemption from the 
notification and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the 
basis that this noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle 
safety.
    This notice of receipt of GM's petition is published under 49 
U.S.C. 30118 and 30120 and does not represent any agency decision or 
other exercise of judgment concerning the merits of the petition.

II. Vehicles Involved

    Affected are approximately 3,426 MY 2011, 2012 and 2013 Chevrolet 
Volt passenger cars that were manufactured from 12/14/2010 to 06/26/
2013 and sold to retail customers with windshield sunshades as a 
``Limited Personalization Option.''

III. Noncompliance

    GM explains that the noncompliance is that the subject vehicles 
were delivered as new vehicles to retail customers with windshield 
sunshades that do not meet the maximum burn rate requirement of 
paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 302.

IV. Rule Text

    Refer to the entire text of Paragraph S4 of FMVSS No. 302 for 
contextual restrictions as well as the specific requirements of 
subparagraph S4.3.

V. Summary of GM's Analyses

    GM stated its belief that the subject noncompliance is 
inconsequential to motor vehicle safety for the following reasons:
    a. When tested as a finished part (i.e., with the inner and outer 
layers tested as though they form a composite), the sunshade's burn 
rate of 35mm/minute is significantly less than the FMVSS No. 302 
maximum burn rate of 102 mm/minute. The outer layer is composed of 
self-extinguishing material that meets all of the requirements of FMVSS 
No. 302. While the layers of the assembly are not bonded at every point 
of contact, they are held together and encased with FMVSS No. 302 
compliant self-extinguishing trim and stitching around the entire 
perimeter of the sunshade. Additional double rows of stitching create 
vertical accordion fold lines in the sunshade. The stitching segments 
the inner layer into smaller pieces that

[[Page 3472]]

are separated by double layers of the FMVSS No. 302 compliant self-
extinguishing outer layer material.
    b. Only the inner layer, by itself, does not meet the FMVSS No. 302 
burn rate, and at 110 mm/minute, it is only marginally above the 102 
mm/minute requirement.
    c. The sunshade has a storage bag which is made of FMVSS No. 302 
compliant material. When the sunshade is stored in the provided bag 
while the vehicle is in use, the external surface that is presented to 
the occupant compartment is well within the FMVSS requirement, and two 
layers of FMVSS No. 302 compliant material would have to be penetrated 
to reach the marginally noncompliant inner layer.
    d. Even if the sunshade was not placed in its storage bag when not 
in use, the external surface that is presented to the occupant 
compartment is still FMVSS compliant, and this layer would still need 
to be penetrated to reach the marginally noncompliant inner layer. In 
addition, folding it alone reduces the sunshade's surface area to 
approximately one eighth of the unfolded surface area, further reducing 
the exposure to any potential ignition source.
    e. GM stated its belief that the purpose of FMVSS No. 302 is ``to 
reduce the deaths and injuries to motor vehicle occupants caused by 
vehicle fires, especially those originating in the interior of the 
vehicle from sources such as matches or cigarettes.'' FMVSS No. 302, 
paragraph S.2. The sunshade is designed to be used only when the 
vehicle is parked, and it is extremely unlikely that the inner layer 
would ever come in contact with an ignition source. As such, it is 
extremely unlikely that a vehicle occupant would ever be exposed to a 
risk of injury as a result of the noncompliance.
    f. Because the sunshade is intended to help reduce sun load during 
hot weather conditions, it may be removed from the vehicle entirely 
during colder months, further reducing the exposure of the sunshade to 
the interior of the vehicle.
    g. GM stated its belief that NHTSA has previously granted several 
inconsequential noncompliance petitions that GM believes can be applied 
to a decision on its petition. See GM's petition for a complete 
discussion of its reasoning.
    h. There are no known field events involving ignition of sunshades. 
GM is not aware of any crashes, injuries or customer complaints 
involving this windshield sunshade.
    GM has additionally informed NHTSA that it has corrected the 
noncompliance so that all future production vehicles delivered with 
windshield sunshades will comply with FMVSS No. 302
    In summation, GM believes that the described noncompliance of the 
subject vehicles is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety, and that 
its petition, to exempt from providing recall notification of 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118 and remedying the recall 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120 should be granted.
    NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a 
determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers 
only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, 
to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance 
and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, any decision on 
this petition only applies to the subject vehicles that GM no longer 
controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. 
However, any decision on this petition does not relieve motor vehicle 
distributors and dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, offer for 
sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate 
commerce of the noncompliant motor vehicles under their control after 
GM notified them that the subject noncompliance existed.

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: Delegations of authority at 
49 CFR parts 1.95 and 501.8.

Claude H. Harris,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2014-00923 Filed 1-17-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

Connect with The Crittenden Automotive Library

The Crittenden Automotive Library at Google+ The Crittenden Automotive Library on Facebook The Crittenden Automotive Library on Instagram The Crittenden Automotive Library at The Internet Archive The Crittenden Automotive Library on Pinterest The Crittenden Automotive Library on Twitter The Crittenden Automotive Library on Tumblr
 


The Crittenden Automotive Library

Home Page    About Us    Contribute