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GM internal documents: words and phrases to avoid about recalls and test drivers Add to ...

GM employees were instructed to avoid certain words and phrases in their correspondence about recalls and test drivers, according to internal company documents contained in a  consent agreement, released Friday, between the U.S. government and General Motors Co. involving the recall of 2.6 million vehicles because of an ignition switch failure.

The documents include a list of words or phrases “that are to be avoided” and urges GM drivers who are testing vehicles to stick to the facts.

Such words as “widow-maker” “Kevorkianesque” “cataclysmic” should not be used in reports and presentation, the memo says. Company drivers should not describe problems as “scary for the customer” or “this is a lawsuit waiting to happen” and instead should simply say that windshield wipers did not work or doors had to be slammed several times to make sure they closed properly.

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