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An Overview of Common Vehicle Defects

By: Anapol Weiss

Most people who have a vehicle depend on it to transport themselves and their family members to activities and work each day. We rely on our automobiles to function properly each day without fault. Whenever we do experience car issues, which defects are most common and how are these defects dealt with?

If you have been injured by a vehicle defect, you may be eligible for compensation. For more information, contact our local car accident attorneys at Anapol Weiss today.

What Are Recalls For?

All motor vehicles and their equipment manufactured and sold in the United States must pass the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that ensure each vehicle is safe to drive on public roads. These safety standards encompass a wide range of safety features including tires, lights, helmets, brakes, air bags and seat belts.

These standards serve as minimum requirements that each vehicle and piece of equipment must live up to when driving on the roads. A recall is when a manufacturer will alert consumers of a safety defect that could jeopardize the safety of the driver and others on the road.

A recall becomes necessary if a vehicle or piece of equipment does not meet the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards or when there is a defect that effects the safety of the vehicle or equipment.

How Can a Vehicle Defect Cause Injuries?

In the event of driving a defective vehicle or utilizing defective equipment, the results can be dangerous. Vehicle defects can cause injuries in two ways: the vehicle defect could be the sole reason for an accident or it could make the accident injury worse than it would have been if the equipment functioned properly.

For example, if you are involved in a collision and your airbag fails to go off, the result may be broken ribs or an injury that wouldn’t have occurred if the airbag opened as it should.

On the other hand, an accident may occur if an airbag goes off randomly and distracts the driver. Although these situations are different, both situations involve an airbag not working properly which can result in injury.

Common Vehicle Defects:

  • Air bags not deploying at the correct time
  • Seatbelts or seats not working properly during use
  • Wheels that break causing loss of control of vehicle
  • Faulty wiring systems that lead to loss of light or fire
  • Accelerator control that fails to function properly
  • Collapsing roofs during a rollover crash
  • Steering issues
  • Engine issues

What Happens if Your Vehicle Defect Causes an Injury?

If you believe a vehicle defect caused an injury or made an injury worse, you may be able to file a product liability case to hold the vehicle manufacturer responsible for their faulty equipment. There is a Motor Vehicle Defects Law that protects consumers whenever their vehicle or part of their vehicle has a defect that leads to an injury.

If the vehicle is found to be defective, the owner of the vehicle is often times entitled to a free repair or replacement by the manufacturer. If the manufacturer detects the defect, they may order a recall to alert consumers of the vehicle malfunction and encourage drivers to get their vehicles fixed for free.

If both the driver and the manufacturer fail to detect a defect in the vehicle and there is an accident because of this defect, the driver might be entitled to recover compensation from the manufacturer. This would be because the manufacturer built and allowed a dangerous vehicle to drive on the road.

Under the Lemon Law, if the driver made multiple attempts to fix their vehicle yet there is no resolve, the driver may be entitled to compensation from the manufacturer.

In order to fall under the stipulations of the Lemon Law, the vehicle’s issues must be ones that are covered under the manufacturer’s vehicle warranty. The issues must have also begun within the first 18 months of vehicle possession, you must reach out to the manufacturer about the issue and the vehicle must be proven to be less useful and less safe due to the defects.

When you experience a vehicle malfunction, the result can be unsettling and lead to serious injuries for both the driver as well as others on the road. We trust in our vehicle manufacturers to provide us with vehicles and equipment that will aid in our safe travels day to day. If you’ve experienced a vehicle defect that lead to an injury or made your injury worse, you may be entitled to recover compensation.