Photo courtesy of GM.

Photo courtesy of GM.

General Motors' chief executive has agreed to give testimony about the automaker's handling of vehicle safety issues including an ignition-switch failure that resulted in several deaths after airbags failed to deploy.

Mary Barra, a company veteran who took over as CEO in mid-January, will appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee at 11 a.m. East Coast time on April 1. The committee has also invited David Friedman, acting administrator for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administraiton, to testify.

"The problems originated long before Barra and Friedman took the helms of their respective organizations, but their actions and input now, as our investigation proceeds, will be essential to getting answers about what went wrong," according to a statement from the committee. "We want to know if this tragedy could have been prevented and what can be done to ensure the loss of life due to safety failures like this don't happen again."

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet