Worried about the safety of your car? Websites allow you to check driver complaints

PHOENIX - General Motors is getting a lot of criticism for its response to safety concerns.

But the situation is a good reminder that you don't have to--and probably shouldn't--wait for a recall to check for complaints about your car.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration may not investigate all of the complaints it receives, but it does allow you to search their database for problems that have been reported by other drivers.

With as little info as the year, make and model, you can look for various issues.

For example, GM owners could have seen driver complaints like this one from 2007 about a Chevy Cobalt:

"While driving approximately 50 mph, the contact struck a deer head on and the air bags failed to deploy. Six months later, he struck another deer head on and the air bags failed to deploy again."

Or this complaint from a driver in the same type of car, who say they had an incident along Highway 60 right here in Arizona:

"I was going approximately 52 mph in a 55 mph area. When I hit the guard rail, the car hit almost head on and the air bags never went off."

You can also find car complaints on the Center for Auto Safety website .

And if you are experiencing a problem, make sure to add your complaint to the list. It's an important step in getting the government's attention.

Let me know about your consumer issues by emailing me at joe@abc15.com or by "Liking" my Let Joe Know Facebook Page and telling me about it there.

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