5 Signs That an Accident May Have Been Caused by a Defective Auto Part
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Stewart J. Eisenberg with Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C..
Car accidents can occur for a wide variety of reasons, but a less-frequently discussed cause of car accidents is defective auto parts. Defective seat belts, tires, airbags, and even roof design are just a few types of vehicle defects that can cause or contribute to vehicle accidents and injuries. For example, although defective airbags may not cause an accident, if an airbag fails to deploy or deploys incorrectly during an accident, this could result in injuries that would not have occurred otherwise or injuries that would not have been as severe.
However, in the chaos of a car accident, it can be hard to figure out whether or not a defective auto part played any significant role. This is why car accident cases with potentially defective auto parts typically require the help of experienced accident reconstruction experts and a car accident attorney.
5 signs that could indicate an accident was caused or contributed to by a defective car part include:
- Unusual sounds from the vehicle prior to the accident. Whenever you hear strange sounds coming from your vehicle, it’s important to consult with a mechanic to see if it’s a problem that can be corrected. Some sounds may occur due to a defective car part and could cause or contribute to an accident if left unrepaired.
- Vehicle responding strangely to driver input prior to an accident. Whenever a vehicle is behaving strangely prior to an accident, (i.e. vibrating, pulsing, slipping, etc.) especially when the driver attempts to brake, accelerate, turn the wheel, or otherwise manipulate the vehicle, this could indicate a defect in the steering, fuel system, engine, brakes, and more.
- Safety devices fail to work or deploy during an accident. Airbags are one of the most commonly defective car parts leading to periodic recalls from different manufacturers. When an airbag fails to deploy, deploys too early, does not stay inflated long enough, or inflates too soon, the driver and passengers can suffer serious injuries that otherwise might not have occurred or would have been less severe.
- Accident occurred due to a blown tire. Defective tires are another remarkably common problem that can have big consequences for the affected vehicle as well as anyone else on the road. Tire tread separation commonly occurs in defective tires and may cause the tire to develop bulges in the sidewall and/or blow out when traveling at high speeds or if striking some kind of object. Tire blowouts cause drivers to lose control of their vehicle and can result in devastating accidents.
- Passenger buckled into the vehicle is found outside the vehicle after the accident. If a passenger was buckled prior to the accident yet found outside the vehicle after a collision, this could indicate a serious defect with the seatbelt and/or seat in the vehicle. Seatbelt and seat defects are serious problems that can put passengers at significant risk of catastrophic and even fatal injuries.
Identifying and proving that a defective car part contributed to an accident is notoriously difficult.
One of the biggest problems with defective car part cases is how difficult it can be for the average person to identify much less prove that a defective auto part contributed to the damages. This is why it is essential to contact an experienced car accident attorney whenever you suspect that a defective part played a role in the accident or resulting injuries. These attorneys have access to accident reconstruction experts that can analyze the vehicles, look for potentially defective car parts, and compile important evidence at no out-of-pocket cost to the victim.
In fact, most car accident attorneys offer free consultations and work on a contingency fee basis, which means clients don’t have to pay for their services unless and until they win their case. If a defective auto part is discovered to have played a part in the accident, the designer or manufacturer of the part may be liable for damages including medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
To learn more about how to recognize a defective car part after an accident, or for help investigating your case, reach out to a car accident attorney in your area.