Seatbelts are supposed to protect us and save lives when we get into a vehicle. In most cases, seatbelts do save lives. However, when defects prevent a seatbelt from working as intended, innocent victims are at risk of suffering seriousinjuries and even death. At Parker Waichman LLP, our Product Liability Attorneys are evaluating potential defective seatbelt lawsuits. If you have suffered any injuries and believe a defective seatbelt caused or contributed to cause your auto accident injuries, you may have grounds to seek monetary damages for your suffering. Contact us today to schedule a free accident claim analysis.
Defective Seatbelts – Why Do Some Seatbelts Fail?
There are various reasons why a seatbelt may fail in the event of an auto accident. In most cases, the seatbelt can be linked to a specific defect that should have been discovered before the seatbelt ever made it into a vehicle. The following are common reasons why seatbelts fail:
- Defective Design – If a seatbelt is not properly designed, the entire seatbelt can fail to perform its intended purpose, which is to protect a driver or passenger in the event of an accident. Such defects happen in the early stages of development, which is a crucial period when it comes to the safety of a product, as a design defect affects all subsequently manufactured seatbelts. Additionally, a seatbelt has various components, so one particular component, such as the latch, may be improperly designed and fail to function with the rest of the seatbelt.
- Manufacturing Defect – The manufacturing process is just as crucial as the design process. If something goes wrong in the manufacturing stage, occupants of a vehicle could be at risk of suffering serious or fatal injuries. Unlike a design defect, a manufacturing defect may apply only to a certain set or lot of seatbelts. For example, if a batch of seatbelts were not manufactured properly and were installed into all Honda vehicles in 2017, then only individuals with those particular vehicles would be at risk for suffering harm because of a seatbelt that was defectively manufactured.
- Improper Installation – Similar to a manufacturing defect, if a seatbelt is not properly installed, it could fail and lead to injuries or death. Once a seatbelt is manufactured, it is then installed into a vehicle, and many people may lump manufacturing defect and improper installation into the same category, as they are very similar issues – both occurring before a vehicle gets to the consumer.
- Failure to Warn – If automakers and car dealerships are aware of defective seatbelts and fail to inform consumers of such defects so that consumers can take corrective action or avoid purchasing a vehicle all together, consumers are at risk of suffering significant harm. This is especially the case for used vehicles.
Numerous variables impact the safety and effectiveness of a seatbelt. As such, lawsuits involving defective seatbelts can be complicated and lengthy. But, with the guidance of a skilled attorney, many victims of defective seatbelts successfully pursue legal claims against seatbelt and automobile manufacturers, obtaining much-needed and deserved compensation for their suffering.
Common Defective Seatbelt Injuries During an Accident
Auto accidents are serious enough, so when a defective seatbelt may be to blame, the consequences can be much worse. In many cases, an accident may involve not only negligent or reckless driving (such as running a red light or driving while intoxicated) but also a defective seatbelt that makes accident injuries much worse. Examples of severe and permanent accident injuries related to defective seatbelts include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Broken/fractured bones;
- Cuts, lacerations, and gashes;
- Paralysis (resulting from brain and spinal cord injuries);
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), such as concussions and more severe head injuries;
- Amputation; and
The best way to demonstrate the severity of auto accidents relating to defective seatbelts is to read about the various accidents, recalls, lawsuits, and injuries that have happened throughout the country. Unfortunately, not every story gets to the general public as coverage of recalls and lawsuits do not always reach the media nationwide. The following articles provide examples of outstanding seatbelt recalls and how some defective seatbelts have resulted in permanent injuries.
CONTACT PARKER WAICHMAN LLP FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW
Did you or a loved one sustain harm in an accident with a defective seatbelt? Parker Waichman LLP helps those who have suffered injuries or the loss of a loved one due to another’s negligence receive full monetary compensation. Trust your case with our product liability lawsuit lawyers. For a free consultation, contact our law firm today by using our live chat or calling 1-800-YOUR-LAWYER (1-800-968-7529).
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