Automotive parts manufacturers are held to a much high standard because each part must work in conjunction with other parts to ensure that vehicles function properly and safely. Most companies comply, although some have had more issues than others when it comes to defective car parts.
According to the U.S. Code for Motor Vehicle Safety, “defects” are defined as design, performance, or material flaws that, when uncorrected, fail to conform to government standards. If too many parts get shipped to retail locations and sold, or are passed to automobile assembly plants, the end result could be catastrophic.
The Champion Firm, P.C. represents individuals who have been hurt in accidents caused by defective car parts in Atlanta. If you were injured or someone you love was killed in an accident where a flaw in the airbags, brakes, tires, or any other automotive component was the root cause, contact our Atlanta car accident lawyers immediately for a free claim review and advice about your legal options.
Common Types of Automotive Defects
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the following defects can impact driver safety, and should be immediately addressed if found:
- Malfunctioning power steering components and others directly associated with the steering column
- Poorly crafted fuel components that could cause fires or cause the vehicle to explode while in motion.
- Sticky or otherwise cracked accelerator components
- Cracking or exposed belting in tires, which causes drivers to lose control
- Malfunctioning transfer cases or shifters that could cause vehicles to go into “Park” or “Reverse” without warning
- Defective engine cooling blades which may break off and cause injury while being serviced at home
- Defects in windshield wiper motors that cause the blades to stop working
- Seatbelts that fail to keep the occupant restrained
- Airbags that won’t deploy or cause serious injury when deployed
- Faulty wiring systems that may cause the vehicle to lose illumination or cause a fire
- Bad wiring or poor craftsmanship in ignition switches
Since 1966, roughly 66 million tires have been recalled, and over 380 million automotive products have been recalled all together. Many of these products have caused injury or death.
Claims for Injuries Caused by Defective Car Parts in Atlanta
Under Georgia law, product defects that cause serious injury or death can lead to a civil lawsuit. This means those injured or representing family members who lose their lives can seek money for losses associated with the defective products.
There are several starting points for attorneys who wish to file defective car parts claims on behalf of their client:
- A middleman. Although holding the middle link of the distribution chain accountable may seem worth a look, rarely will the logistics company be held liable unless they were so reckless that defects to the product were caused by mishandling.
- Parts manufacturer. The more likely scenario is holding the parts manufacturer accountable for passing the poor parts.
- Car manufacturer. Quality control should have spotted obvious parts flaws prior to the parts hitting assembly lines. If they failed to catch the error, and the cars get put into retail showrooms across America, there could be liability.
Once The Champion Firm, P.C. identifies which source could be the liable party, we can move forward with your claim and pursue damages for the injuries you sustained.
Defective parts that cause car accidents should be recalled and replaced free of charge. More often than not, those recalls are issued long after hundreds of injuries and deaths have happened on Atlanta highways.
Recovering Damages in an Atlanta Car Defect Claim
According to Georgia statutes, provided there was an injury to more than just the product, and the statute of limitations has not expired, accident victims can pursue damages for losses caused by defective car parts. To settle the case fairly, both economic and noneconomic damages should be taken into account.
There are several statutes of limitations injured parties should be aware of:
- For filing Atlanta personal injury claims, the statute is two years.
- For damage to personal property, four years.
- The statute of repose. In this, the claimant will have 10 years from the time the manufacturer first produced the part or the time the product was first offered for sale, until the time of injury, to file their claim.
- For any wrongful death action, two years.
If you’re unsure what these statutes mean to your product liability claim, contact our firm.
Proving Your Car Defect Claim and Atlanta Product Liability
In proving your car defect claim has merit, you may be required to present evidence that shows:
- Car parts identified as “defective” were excessively hazardous by virtue of design, creation, handling, or shipment of product.
- Because of this defect, you were injured.
- Your injuries occurred while using the product in its intended manner.
Several arguments may be used to provide further evidence of liability, including the manufacturer’s duty to warn others of foreseeable dangers arising from use of the product as it was designed.
Contact Our Atlanta Car Accident Attorneys If You Had a Crash Caused by a Defective Car Part
Defective car parts can cause more than injury to just one person. If the defect happens to be related to tires or fuel tanks, the outcome could cause a catastrophic accident out on the road. That’s why injured persons should retain an experienced Atlanta product liability attorney when they’ve been injured. Class actions are possible when more than one person suffers the same injury stemming from the same part.
The Champion Firm, P.C. is here to stand up for you if a defective car part caused you harm. Contact our office immediately to schedule your free evaluation to learn more about your rights and legal options. We collect only when your case results in payment of compensation.
To learn more, call us today or reach out to us online.