You may understand the risk of getting into an auto accident when operating a motor vehicle; after all, the New Mexico Department of Transportation reported 46,786 traffic accidents in 2018 alone. You may not, however, anticipate getting injured due to a defective auto part. Although millions of consumers trust vehicle manufacturers to design and create safe automobiles, manufacturers make mistakes. Learn the most common auto part defects to maintain better control over the safety of your vehicle.
A car’s brakes are critical for preventing car accidents. Properly working brakes allow a driver to stop on time to avoid colliding with another vehicle, object or pedestrian. Defects with a vehicle’s design or manufacture could lead to a brake line that fails, taking away the driver’s ability to stop or control the car. Other defects may include brake pads that wear out too quickly, bad rotors or cracked calipers. A car’s antilock brake system may also malfunction.
Unexpected brake problems due to a part defect could lead to the loss of vehicle control. Bad brakes could force a car to pull to the side when the driver applies the brakes, for example, or the brakes may not work at all. In some cases, a car could flip or roll over as a result of bad brakes yanking it to one side of the road. In others, the brakes may apply unintentionally while driving. Defective brakes can cause catastrophic car accidents.
The tires are where the car meets the road. The proper performance of a vehicle’s tires is imperative for the safety of its occupants. When a tire contains a defect, it may wear out too soon or unevenly, making it dangerous for the driver to operate the vehicle. Since the driver may not expect the tires to wear out so quickly, the driver may not notice the issue until it is too late.
Defective tires often cause tire blowouts and related auto accidents. A tire blowout is when a tire suddenly pops or explodes, rather than a leak and slow tire deflation. When a tire blows out, the driver can lose all control of the vehicle, resulting in a collision. The vehicle may also roll over with a tire blowout. The blown-out tire may need to be inspected by a professional for signs of a defect.
The seats of a vehicle have the power to prevent catastrophic injuries by properly withstanding the forces of a crash to keep the occupant in the safest possible position for impact. One defect, known as seatback failure, compromises safety by the back of the seat snapping backward in a collision. The seatback failure auto defect can cause permanent and fatal spinal cord injuries for the occupant. It could also crush children sitting in the back seat.
Airbags are important safety devices, but they only save lives when working properly. Malfunctioning airbags may deploy at random times when driving or may fail to deploy in an accident. Unfortunately, several major airbag brands have issued recalls for defective products in the past. The biggest airbag recall to date was from Takata.
The Takata airbag recall impacted tens of millions of vehicles. These airbags contain defective non-azide inflators that can explode during deployment – sending dangerous metal shrapnel shooting into the cab of the car. These defective airbags have killed 18 people in the US and injured at least 250 others.
What to Do After an Auto Defect Accident
If you were injured in a car accident in Albuquerque and believe an auto part defect caused or contributed to your injuries, contact a product liability attorney right away. A product liability lawyer can help you go up against an automaker or vehicle distributor in pursuit of financial compensation. A lawyer can fight for a fair recovery on your behalf, allowing you to pay for your medical bills, property repairs and other losses.