Car Accidents Caused By Defective Vehicles
Although automobile safety has improved considerably over the last several decades, vehicle defects still cause car accidents. Vehicle factors were the critical reason for 44,000 of the 2.2 million accidents reviewed in the National Motor Vehicle Crash Causation Survey, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
One recent example of an auto defect involves problems with ignition switches on some models of GM cars. According to a CBS News article, GM is paying out compensation to the families of at least 64 people who died in accidents caused by GM’s defective ignition switch. As reported, the switch could slip out of the “on” position, cutting the engine and disabling the air bags and power steering.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash caused by an automotive defect, your best course of action is to consult with a knowledgeable Dallas car accident lawyer. You may be entitled to file a claim for compensation for your injuries.
At Kraft & Associates, P.C., we have years of experience handling accident claims. Our attorneys can negotiate skillfully out of court on your behalf, or fight aggressively for your rights and interests at trial if necessary. We are committed to helping you obtain fair compensation for your losses.
Common Types of Auto Defects
Automobile and automotive parts manufacturers are required to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and Regulations issued by NHTSA. Millions of vehicles and auto parts have been recalled by NHTSA for failure to meet those standards.
Some examples of safety-related defects listed by NHTSA include:
- Accelerators that stick or break.
- Air bags that deploy when they should not.
- Electrical system problems that cause fires or loss of lights.
- Wheels that crack or break, causing loss of control of the vehicle.
- Steering components that break and cause loss of vehicle control.
- Fuel system components susceptible to crash damage that leak and cause fires.
- Windshield wiper assemblies that do not work properly.
- Seats or seatbacks that fail unexpectedly.
- Tires or other critical vehicle components that break, fall apart or separate from the vehicle, causing potential for loss of control of the vehicle and injury to people in or out of the vehicle.
Types of Injuries Resulting from Defective Vehicles
Defective vehicles and auto parts can cause accidents and injuries in two different ways:
- When a defective vehicle is the actual cause of the accident – such as when the steering fails, an airbag deploys unexpectedly, a tire blows out or the ignition cuts off, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
- When vehicle defects cause injuries in a crash to be more serious that they would have been otherwise – such as when an airbag fails, a seat belt fails, the vehicle rolls over when it swerves or the roof collapses when the vehicle rolls over.
Liability and Compensation for Auto Defects
Automobile and auto parts manufacturers have a duty to ensure that their products are reasonably safe, or to adequately warn consumers if there are dangers, whether current or discovered later. When they fail in this duty, an injured party may be entitled to file a product liability lawsuit to recover damages for injuries caused by the defective product.
Depending on the circumstances, an auto defect injury claim may be filed against the automobile manufacturer, the manufacturer of the defective part, the company that distributed the vehicle, the car dealer or others.
Injured victims of car accidents caused by automotive defects may be entitled to file a claim to pursue compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. In some exceptional cases, it may also be possible to recover punitive damages, which are intended to punish a responsible party.
Get Help from Our Dallas Auto Defect Lawyers
Auto defect claims can be complex. If you have been hurt in an accident that involved a defective vehicle, it is important to consult with a knowledgeable lawyer as soon as possible. At Kraft & Associates, P.C., our attorneys have decades of experience handling all types of auto accident claims, and we are committed to pursuing fair compensation for you.
We are an established firm, and our lawyers are friendly and easy to talk to. We can review your case free of charge and advise you about your legal options and the compensation you may be entitled to claim. Contact our firm to begin taking action to hold responsible parties accountable for your injuries.