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House panel to hold hearing on Volt
A House panel will hold a hearing next month on the Chevrolet Volt and the Obama administration's investigation into fire risks in the extended-range electric vehicle.

The announcement came as Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said Tuesday he believes the Volt is safe. He denied that the government withheld news of a fire in a crash-test vehicle to protect Detroit-based General Motors Co.

"I believe the Volt is safe to drive," LaHood told reporters after testifying before lawmakers on an unrelated matter.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said Tuesday that one of its panels plans to hold a hearing in late January on the Volt battery issue, according to committee spokesman Jeff Solsby.

The hearing by the committee's panel on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending also will look at the government's investigation into fire risks.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, chairman of the subcommittee panel, said he wanted to know if the government had been candid about its investigation into the Volt.

"It gives us great concern that recent reports indicate important safety information may have been omitted in testimony before our committee just a few weeks ago," Jordan said in a statement. "This is a serious situation that our committee will look further into."

[Editor's Note: Perhaps the mental midgets in Washington should hold a hearing on gasoline fueled cars which have been known to explode or burn on impact, which the Volt battery does not do, giving the occupants plenty of time to exit the vehicle.  Exit safely, the key point - unlike some gasoline fueled cars where the trapped passenger burns like a crispy fry.]

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