Dangerous and defective products cause thousands of injuries every year. When a vehicle is manufactured with defective parts, it may put drivers, passengers, and others on the road at risk because the vehicle behaves in a way that causes safety concerns. In some cases, the vehicle’s defect becomes obvious right away and in other cases, the problem(s) develop over time.
There are generally two ways that a vehicle component can be deemed defective:
- Design defects. Design defects make a vehicle unsafe to drive even when it is manufactured and driven the way it was meant to be. It means that the part’s design was defective and therefore unsafe no matter how smoothly it is installed into the vehicle.
- Manufacturing defects. Manufacturing defects are caused by mistakes made during the manufacturing process. Generally, in manufacturing defect cases, a properly designed part is installed incorrectly or becomes damaged during installation.
Recent Vehicle Recalls due to Defective Parts
Honda and Acura are recalling more than 2.5 million vehicles over potentially faulty fuel pumps. According to documents posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website, affected models include 2018 through 2020 editions of some of its most purchased vehicles, including Accords, Civics, and CR-Vs.
A faulty fuel pump in a vehicle can pose several dangers and consequences, impacting both the performance of the vehicle and the safety of its occupants. Here are some potential dangers associated with a faulty fuel pump:
- Engine performance issues. A faulty fuel pump may not deliver an adequate amount of fuel to the engine, leading to poor engine performance. This can result in symptoms such as rough idling, stalling, hesitation, and reduced power. In extreme cases, the engine may fail to start altogether.
- Vehicle breakdown. If the fuel pump completely fails, the vehicle may come to a sudden stop, leading to a breakdown. This can be inconvenient, especially if it occurs in a hazardous location or adverse weather conditions.
- Overheating. A malfunctioning fuel pump can cause the engine to run lean, which may lead to overheating. Insufficient fuel supply can cause the engine to operate at higher temperatures, potentially resulting in engine damage or failure.
- Risk of fire. In rare cases, a faulty fuel pump can contribute to a potential fire hazard. If the pump fails to regulate fuel pressure correctly, it may lead to fuel leaks, which, when combined with an ignition source, can result in a fire.
Toyota is recalling about 1 million cars and SUVs in the United States due to a possible defect that could cause the passenger airbag to fail to deploy in a crash. The recall involves several 2020 through 2022 model year Toyota and Lexus models including the Avalon, Camry, Corolla, Sienna Hybrid, RAV4, and Lexus ES250, ES300H, ES350, and RX350.
When a passenger airbag fails to deploy in a crash, several dangers and consequences can arise for the occupants of the vehicle:
- Increased risk of injury or death. Airbags are designed to provide an additional layer of protection in the event of a collision. If the passenger airbag fails to deploy, the occupant may face a higher risk of injury or even death, as they lack the added protection the airbag could have provided.
- Secondary impacts. Without the restraint and cushioning effect of the airbag, occupants may be more susceptible to secondary impacts, such as hitting the windshield, dashboard, or other hard surfaces inside the vehicle. This can result in head injuries, facial injuries, or fractures.
- Ejection risk. In severe collisions, the failure of the passenger airbag to deploy could increase the risk of ejection from the vehicle, further exposing occupants to serious injuries or fatalities.
- Whiplash injuries. Without the protection of an airbag, occupants may experience more significant whiplash injuries due to the sudden deceleration during a crash.
- Incomplete protection. Modern vehicles are designed with a combination of safety features, including seat belts and airbags, to work together to provide comprehensive protection. If the airbag fails, the overall safety system may be compromised, leaving occupants without the full intended protection.
If a passenger airbag fails to deploy or a component of a vehicle fails and results in injury or death, there may be legal consequences for the vehicle manufacturer. Lawsuits and liability issues can arise, and the manufacturer may be held accountable for any defective parts.
Products Liability Law for Car Accidents
If you were involved in a car crash caused by a defective part, contact a products liability lawyer today; he or she may be able to help you recover damages for your injury.
In successful product liability cases, a product manufacturer, distributor or seller is held liable for the injuries caused by the defective or dangerous product. Product liability laws vary by state but generally require that a product meet ordinary consumer expectations that a product be free of defects or dangers. When a product fails to meet this threshold, it could end up as part of a product liability lawsuit.
Seek the help of a car accident lawyer
If you or a loved one was injured in a collision because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced car accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!