You must have heard about the famous Toyota gas pedal issue that took place in 2009-2011, in which the company had to recall more than 4 million vehicles for fixing the problem. It resulted in many car accidents and fatalities because the gas pedal got stuck and the drivers lost control over their vehicles. The lawsuits that were filed against Toyota cost them over $1.1 billion in settlements.
Another similar car-related product liability issue occurred with Takata airbags. The problem with their products was that their airbags were deploying explosively, severely injuring, and in some cases, even killing the passengers. Over 30 million vehicles, made by 10 different manufacturers, were recalled.
Just like the Toyota and Takata cases, there many other cases where the accidents happened because of the faulty vehicle components and manufacturers were sued. However, it sometimes becomes difficult for the injured party to make out whether the personal injury happened due to their own negligence or faulty vehicle parts. In such a case, seeking legal help of an experienced personal injury attorney is the best way to get the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Types of Vehicle Defects
When filing a personal injury lawsuit, it is important to know about the type of defect that caused the accident. Moreover, the origin of the fault will also influence who should be held responsible for your pain and suffering. Broadly speaking, the vehicle defects can be categorized as:
- Manufacturing defect: A defect in the vehicle parts which occurred during their manufacturing or when the vehicle was assembled.
- Design defect: This defect refers to the inaccuracy in the design plan of the vehicle’s part. Since there were flaws in the actual design, the part will be dangerous even when it is used as it was supposed to be used. Moreover, all vehicles equipped with that part will have the same issue.
- Warning defect: It is also known as a marketing defect. It occurs when the defect is not apparent to the user, and the manufacturer didn’t take measures to warn potential users of its dangers.
Liability for Vehicle Defects
If the safety features or any other component of the car fails to perform as it should, or there is a design flaw that caused the accident, you can file a lawsuit against manufacturers and hold them responsible for paying damages. You can pursue a personal injury or wrong death claim, if you have lost a loved one, for all damages sustained, which would’ve not happened in the first place if the vehicle part had no defects.
However, there is also a chance that the manufacturer is not at fault. Depending on how and why the malfunction occurred, the dealership from where you bought the vehicle can be held liable. Moreover, in certain cases, mechanics involved in repairing the vehicle or manufacturers of specific parts can also be at fault.
It can be a challenging task to determine liability in the event of a vehicle accident due to a faulty vehicle part. That is why is important to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to help you evaluate your case and get fair compensation. Contact the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, P.C. at (847) 395-2200 or online today to schedule your initial consultation with our firm.