General Motors plans to appeal a decision by a California jury that awarded $3.4 million to a California family.
The settlement came as part of a lawsuit against GM over a defective telescoping steering column in a 2005 Corvette belonging to Patti Boekamp.
“Two hours after my wife came home and parked the car in the garage, the car caught fire and took the 5,300-square-foot house with it,” her husband, Herbert Boekamp, said.
Also lost in the January 16, 2010 fire was a 1962 Corvette.
Fortunately, the family escaped unharmed, despite the fact that several hard-wired smoke alarms didn’t work because the fire burned the circuits. Herbert Boekamp was awakened by the smell of smoke.
Once they had exited the burning house, Mr. Boekamp noticed a trail of gasoline that leaked out of the garage.
“When the car melted down, the gas rolled out of the garage and caught the outside of the home on fire; that was the first clue that it was the car,” he said.
The Boekamps can’t rebuild the house until the legal issues are resolved. A judgment will be entered against GM on Monday, and the automaker has indicated it will appeal within the 60 days allotted to do so.
Channel 10 News – San Diego