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Car Accident Information Center

Vehicle Malfunction Accident

When people talk about car accidents, most people instinctively think of negligent drivers using their phones while on the road. Otherwise, it could be a driver under the influence of alcohol. However, there’s a cause of accidents that goes beyond the actions of other road users. Every year, many drivers are injured by a defective vehicle or a mechanical malfunction.

If you’ve been involved in a vehicle malfunction accident, we recommend contacting a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. The steps you take in the immediate aftermath of the car accident could determine whether you get the compensation that you deserve. The Injury Firm will protect your rights, gather evidence, speak to eyewitnesses, and build a case on your behalf.

Vehicle Malfunction Accident Statistics

Over the years, it’s fair to say that vehicle safety has improved significantly. For example, seatbelts are better, anti-lock brakes prevent multi-car crashes, head restraints have improved, airbags help in cases where seatbelts aren’t used, and drivers are more informed about the importance of tire pressure checks and other safety features.

Despite this, defective vehicles are still responsible for between 40,000 and 50,000 accidents each year. Not so long ago, over 60 people died because of an ignition switch fault at GM. While driving along, the ignition switch slipped, and this cut the engine. Not only this, but it also cut the power steering while disabling airbags.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing a driver can do in this situation. Although we place our lives and the lives of loved ones into the hands of car manufacturers, there are countless examples of how these companies have let Americans down over the years.

Examples of Mechanical Malfunction

At The Injury Firm, we’re passionate about helping people who have been involved in a car accident that wasn’t their fault. Though the case will differ slightly, drivers can claim against vehicle manufacturers just as they would another driver, but we’ll explore this in more detail later. First, what are some common examples of mechanical malfunction?

Whenever a vehicle leaves the factory, it must adhere to the requirements of the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). Sadly, this isn’t always the case, and the NHTSA listed some of the most common examples. This includes cracked wheels, airbags unexpectedly deploying, sticking accelerators, failed electrical systems, leaks in fuel systems, poor windshield wiper assembly, failed seats, and the failure of other critical components.

Despite the commonality of accidents on the road, drivers just don’t expect a car accident when traveling to work, the gym, picking up children from school and clubs, and other simple trips. As a result, they aren’t prepared for an airbag that suddenly deploys when it shouldn’t. Likewise, they aren’t ready to deal with faulty electrical systems causing a fire.

Common Injuries from a Vehicle Malfunction Accident

In our experience, injuries can form in a couple of different ways in a vehicle malfunction accident. On the one hand, the defect can cause an accident. For example, let’s say that the windshield wipers malfunction on a treacherous day and this reduces visibility for the driver to almost nothing. Elsewhere, it could be a brake failure or the ignition cutting off that causes the driver to crash.

On the other hand, the defect can make an accident worse. For instance, you might get hit by a negligent driver, but your injuries are made worse because the airbag didn’t deploy as it should have done. Alternatively, the roof could collapse in a roll, or the seat belt might fail.

In either cause, victims can experience whiplash, brain damage, spinal cord damage, bone breaks, sprains and strains, lacerations, and other serious injuries.

Talk with a car accident attorney



Liability with a Defective Vehicle

So, who is to blame for the accident? If the manufacturer allowed a faulty vehicle to leave the factory, this will likely result in a product liability case against the company. Working with The Injury Firm, you’ll need to prove that the company should have picked up on the defect or shouldn’t have allowed the vehicle into the hands of a customer.

If you’re to hold a manufacturer liable for an accident, we’ll need an expert to look over the vehicle to confirm that the defect was present during the manufacturing process. You’ll need a personal injury lawyer by your side at this stage because auto companies have heavy budgets and good legal teams. For example, they might try to prove that you caused the issue or that you didn’t return the vehicle many months after a recall.

In reality, most cases after a vehicle malfunction accident will actually be against a repair shop or garage. Rather than the malfunction coming from the factory, it could have been caused by somebody repairing or working on your vehicle. Depending on the age of your car, it’s likely that car technicians have had more hands-on time than those in the factory.

Once again, the key to success is a thorough investigation to highlight the cause of the accident. Working with specialists, we’ll need to determine whether a case is made against the manufacturer or a repair shop. While independent shops may lack the resources to handle a lawsuit, a chain is more likely to have insurance to protect employees.

Contact The Injury Firm

In some situations, the car accident is caused by a parts manufacturer rather than the main manufacturer itself. As mentioned earlier, the legal procedures associated with vehicle malfunction accidents are complex and intricate. The Injury Firm has experience in this field and will help you to recuperate funds to cover damages. This can include the following:

  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Medical bills
  • Funeral expenses
  • Property damage
  • Loss of companionship and consortium

As the plaintiff, you’ll need to prove that the guilty party is responsible for the fault and, by extension, your accident and injuries. What’s more, you’ll need to prove that you didn’t cause the issue by working on the vehicle yourself. For professional help, call the competent team at The Injury Firm today!

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