A Defective Car Caused an Accident: Who Can Be Held Accountable for Damages?
Car accidents occur for a number of different reasons, including negligent drivers, forces of nature, and defective products. Vehicles are designed to safely protect their drivers and passengers, however, with hundreds of different parts that work together to make a vehicle run, when just one piece is defective, it can cause a series of issues that can lead to an accident or make the consequences of an accident even worse.
If you were involved in a car accident due to defective vehicle parts, you may be entitled to receive compensation for damages. At West Coast Trial Lawyers, our qualified car accident attorneys have over 60 years of collective legal experience in handling personal injury cases. With our track record of recovering more than $1 billion in settlements for our clients, we are confident that we will get the maximum compensation you deserve.
To schedule a free consultation, please contact our 24/7 legal team by calling 213-927-3700 or filling out our quick contact form.
Types of Defective Car Parts
Cars are made up of hundreds of different parts and features that are designed to make operating a vehicle a safe experience. While these parts and pieces are too many to list, there are some that are more defective than others. Here is how these common defective car parts can impact a driver’s safety:
- Tires are an essential control component of a vehicle. They allow for smooth and grounded movement on the road. If a tire or tire part breaks, separates from the vehicle, loses traction, or unexpectedly pops, this can cause a vehicle to lose control and result in an accident.
- Brakes are essential to a driver’s safety as they allow vehicles to moderate speed and make stops to prevent them from crashing. If car brakes are defective, a driver will not be able to avoid getting into an accident with a vehicle, building, or other objects nearby.
- In the state of California, it is expected for all drivers to wear a seat belt when a vehicle is in motion. Seat belts provide protection upon impact in a crash and will help prevent passengers from being ejected out of the vehicle. A defective seat belt could cause a passenger to sustain severe injuries from being tossed around violently or projected out of the car. Defective seat belts could also tighten the passenger to the car seat, thus making it nearly impossible to get out of the vehicle.
- Airbags are intended to lessen the blow of injuries caused by high-impact crashes. A defective airbag may react in several different ways when it comes to getting into an accident. To begin with, if an airbag does not respond to a high-impact crash, then the driver will suffer serious injuries from the collision. A defective airbag that does not activate upon a low-impact crash will obstruct the view and control of the vehicle. Lastly, an airbag that reacts quickly and forcefully could cause the driver to endure severe injuries, such as broken bones and/or a concussion.
- Windshield wipers function to assist a driver’s visibility of the road in front of them by wiping away water when it is raining. Defective windshield wipers could make it difficult for the driver to see the roads clearly on a rainy day. This may increase the chances of getting into a car accident.
- Accelerators function to help put a vehicle in motion and increase its speed. However, if an accelerator is defective, it could lock. This may leave the driver in a dangerous position as the vehicle accelerates out of their control and can lose motion while on the road.
- Steering components function to help a driver direct the positioning of the car’s wheels. If a steering component breaks or locks, a driver could lose control of their vehicle, thus causing an accident.
- Fuel systems are designed to maintain a vehicle’s fuel. If a fuel system component becomes defective, then the fuel may not be properly held or administered, which could potentially cause a fuel leakage. This could result in a fire.
- Electrical systems, which include the battery, starter, and alternator, function to provide vehicles with electric power. A defective electrical system can cause an energy shortage, which could be detrimental, especially to electric cars. Gas-run and hybrid vehicles may lose proper function in features, such as lights for signaling and stopping.
The state of California is a non-no-fault state. This means that an individual must be found at-fault for causing the accident, even if the impact didn’t appear to be triggered by any party in particular. Oftentimes, product failure has contributed to a collision. Under this type of circumstance, the manufacturers will be held responsible for product liability. Product liability means that the manufacturers were negligent in assuring that the product was completely safe before sending it off to the market.
California is also identified as a comparative liability state. This indicates that more than one entity can be held liable for contributing to a crash that resulted in damages and injuries. Any party that displayed acts of negligence will be held responsible for the role they played. Defective car parts are partial to product liability, meaning that the manufacturer or distributor could be held liable for damages and injuries caused by the faulty product.
Need a Car Accident Attorney? West Coast Trial Lawyers Can Help
If you have sustained injuries as a result of a car accident, our skilled team of car accident attorneys at West Coast Trial Lawyers can help you recover compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Contact us today by calling 213-927-3700 or filling out our contact form to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.