No one wants to be in a crash. But if an accident does occur, most people take some comfort in knowing that their vehicle’s safety features, such as airbags and seatbelts, will help to keep them safe and prevent injuries. But what happens when airbags fail, resulting in more catastrophic injuries to the vehicle occupants than would have been suffered otherwise? If you’ve suffered harm as a result of airbag failure, our lawyers at the law office of Tetzel Law can help. Please call us today to learn more about bringing forth an airbag failure claim and your rights.
Reasons Airbags May Not Deploy
Airbags are meant to deploy upon impact, offering protection to a vehicle’s occupants. However, sometimes airbags do not deploy, which may exacerbate the risk of severe injury in a crash. There are a handful of reasons that airbags may not deploy; getting to the bottom of what went wrong will be essential to recovering a settlement, which is one of the primary reasons that it’s important to work with a lawyer. Common reasons that airbags may not deploy include:
- The crash was too minor to trigger the deployment of the airbags. Airbags are not designed to deploy in minor crashes; seatbelts are meant to protect vehicle occupants in this instance.
- The airbags in a vehicle have been deployed in the past in a previous crash and have not been replaced, resulting in airbag failure. Airbags can only deploy once.
- The airbags are defective. Sometimes, airbags should deploy–and are designed to deploy–in a crash but don’t because they have been defectively manufactured or installed.
Liability for Airbag Failure Accidents
If the airbags fail to deploy in a crash and a person suffered severe or fatal injuries as a result, who should be liable? In many cases, liability for damages will be shared amongst the following parties:
- The at-fault driver. While injuries may be exacerbated by the failure of airbags to deploy, the injuries would not have occurred in the first place had the accident never happened. As such, the at-fault driver will usually be held partially liable for a crash, even one that involves airbag failures (an issue that the at-fault driver has nothing to do with).
- The airbag manufacturer. If the airbag failure is a result of a design or manufacturing defect, then the airbag manufacturer may be held liable for the damages that result.
- Vehicle manufacturer/distributor. Sometimes, it’s not the airbag manufacturer that’s to blame for the defect, but the vehicle manufacturer or distributor. For example, a vehicle manufacturer may have improperly installed the airbags, or the sensor to detect the severity of a crash (and determine whether or not airbags should deploy) may have been defectively installed. Additionally, there may be instances when a vehicle manufacturer knows that the airbags are defective, yet distributes the vehicle anyway.
Call Our Lawyers Today for Help with Your Case
If you have been injured in a car accident where your airbags didn’t deploy, you need a legal advocate on your side who will work hard to investigate your case, determine the cause of the lack of deployment, and build your case. At the office of Tetzel Law, our Massachusetts car accident lawyers have experience working on defective products cases and know what it takes to win. Call our law firm today at (617) 742-1700 for your free consultation.