The average car has about 30,000 parts, and fortunately, most of the time, they work together properly so we can travel safely. However, like any machine, cars don’t always operate as they should. Under the best circumstances, damaged or worn-out car parts are replaced or repaired without too much fanfare, except maybe a hit to the pocketbook. Other times, though, a malfunctioning car can be the primary reason for an accident that injures passengers, bystanders or fellow motorists, or causes property damage.
Just as vehicle owners are expected to maintain their cars, manufacturers are responsible for providing safe equipment and notifying car owners of any problems. By late 2019, more than 41 million vehicles were recalled because they had faulty Takata airbags. The warning didn’t come in time for some people: the airbags were associated with 16 deaths in the U.S. and 300 injuries worldwide.
Looking Under the Hood
Some car parts that are known to malfunction and contribute to accidents or injuries include these:
- Airbags are designed to protect vehicle occupants, but there are several ways they can malfunction. If they inflate too quickly, the sudden force can cause broken bones or other injuries; if they fail to inflate, the passenger can receive the full impact of a crash.
- Seat belts can save lives. New York law requires all front-seat passengers to wear seat belts, and all children ages 4 to 16 to wear them wherever they sit in a car. However, when a seat belt malfunctions during an accident, its wearer can be injured and even ejected from the vehicle.
- Brake, power steering or tire failures limit the driver’s ability to control the vehicle.
- A faulty electrical system can cause sudden car fires.
Who’s at Fault?
If you’ve been in an accident and believe a malfunctioning car part contributed to your injuries, it’s important to:
- Take photos of the car and accident scene
- Wait to have car repairs made until you consult with an attorney.
An experienced attorney can tell you if your case meets the standards of negligence as defined by New York law. He or she would argue:
- The manufacturer/mechanic had a duty to provide safe car parts or warn of faulty ones
- The manufacturer/mechanic did not live up to that responsibility
- Harm was caused by the faulty parts
- Damages should be awarded to compensate the accident victim
Talk With an Expert
The Yonkers car accident lawyers at Sayegh & Sayegh are experienced in handling all types of car accident cases, including those involving malfunctioning parts. They are committed to helping accident victims receive the compensation they deserve for damages, lost wages, pain and suffering, and medical expenses. Call (914) 222-8161 or contact us online to discuss your case with a Sayegh & Sayegh attorney today.