Auto accident injuries are often caused or made worse by a defective auto. Vehicle defects can cause an accident or cause serious injuries or death in an accident which otherwise would have resulted in only minor injuries or no injuries at all.
Auto defects fall into two categories:
- Defects which cause accidents
- Defects which affect the vehicle's crashworthiness
Defects Which Cause Accidents
Design defects, defective parts, defective systems in vehicles, and parts which are not appropriate for the vehicle can all cause a crash. Some common defects which can lead to serious or even fatal auto accidents include:
- Faulty tires
- Defective brakes
- Spontaneous acceleration
- SUV and large passenger van design defects (rollover hazard)
- Faulty steering systems
Crashworthiness is a vehicle's ability to protect occupants from injury in the event of a crash. Defects which affect crashworthiness do not cause accidents. They cause injures or death once an accident is initiated. Auto defects affecting crashworthiness include:
- Defective seat belts
- Defective airbags
- Defective child restraints
- Poor roof crush resistance
- Defective seats
- Defective door latches
- Defective fuel systems (causing fuel fed fires)
Defects Leading to Fires
Occasionally an auto defect can cause accidents, injuries, and death without ever causing a crash. A defective cruise control switch in some Ford trucks and SUV's built from 1994 to 2002 caused the vehicles to catch fire when they were not running. A design defect in the switch cause the switch to be powered at all times, even when the vehicle was turned off and the key removed from the ignition. If a vehicle catches fire in your garage in the middle of the night, it can easily lead to a fatal house fire.
If your accident or injuries were cause by a defective automobile, your auto accident lawsuit will also be a products liability suit. Responsible parties can include:
- Auto manufacturers
- Parts manufacturers
- Repair shops
Depending on the nature and cause of the accident, other drivers may or may not be held responsible, as well.
At William J. Tinning, P. C., we believe that every case is important, and no case too small. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed by a defective vehicle, please call or email us today to schedule your free consultation.
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