Throughout the course of a normal day, residents in Wyoming and Idaho use hundreds of products. While most of these products are safe, the number that aren’t safe — even when used as labeled — has increased in recent years. Around 400 products are recalled in the U.S. each year due to design, manufacturing, or labeling defects. Most of these recalls are voluntary and the company is assisted in spreading the word about the recall by the Consumer Product Safety Commission or other federal agencies tasked with ensuring that the products consumers have access to in the marketplace are safe when used according to instructions.
When motor vehicle parts are defective, they result in a hazardous situation for both the owner of the defective vehicle as well as anyone else who happens to be on the roadway. If you were injured in Wyoming or Idaho as a result of a motor vehicle defect, you can pursue compensation for your injuries through a product liability lawsuit. An experienced motor vehicle defects and recalls lawyer from Ochs Law Firm can help you understand this process.
Common Motor Vehicle Defects and Recalls
According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), which is one of the federal agencies tasked with promoting and ensuring vehicle safety, approximately 67 million vehicles have been recalled in recent years due to airbags that were designed by a company called Takata due to the risk that the airbags, when exposed to high heat and humidity, can explode when deployed, causing serious injury or death.
In addition to defective airbags, some of the more common motor vehicle defects that can result in a recall include:
- Defective ignitions. In 2014, GM recalled about 800,000 compact vehicles due to a faulty ignition switch that caused the vehicle to shut off while in motion. In the following months, the recall expanded to about 30 million recalled cars. The company also had to pay settlements in compensation for 124 deaths that were caused by the issue.
- Defective brakes. In 2019, GM recalled 3.5 million vehicles due to an issue with the power brake-assist system. The system was designed to make braking easier. However, on some vehicles, the system was failing, which was causing it to be much harder for a driver to depress the brakes, increasing the risk of the driver striking another car or a pedestrian. In late 2020, more than 14,000 more vehicles were added to the recall.
- Defective tires. An entire lot of tires can be recalled due to a defect, or your lawyer may discover while investigating your accident that a tire on your vehicle or another vehicle involved was defective. Defective tires are dangerous as they can result in a blowout which can cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
- Fuel system defects. This type of defect can result in a vehicle stall. Having your vehicle stall on a busy roadway increases your risk of becoming involved in an accident.
- Design defects. Some vehicles are not designed to be crashworthy. A well-known example of this would be the SUVs of the past, which featured a high center of gravity that made the vehicle prone to rollovers, and featured a higher front profile, which resulted in more severe accidents to pedestrians.
Proving Liability in a Motor Vehicle Defect Case
There are three types of auto part defects that can result in a product liability case, including:
- Design defects: This type of defect existed before the product was even manufactured and results in the product being unreasonably dangerous.
- Manufacturing defects: These defects occur during the construction or manufacturing of the vehicle or parts and are not related to how the product was designed.
- Marketing defects: These defects occur when the product is improperly labeled or when the manufacturer fails to warn consumers of the inherent dangers involved in using the product.
One of the important services your motor vehicle defects and recalls lawyer will provide for you is a determination of all liable parties. In order to prove that a manufacturer or distributor of defective auto parts was legally responsible for the accident that caused your injury, you must be able to show the following elements in your case:
- You were injured.
- A defective product caused your injury.
- You were using the product as intended.
Ochs Law Firm Can Help
Defective product claims are difficult cases. Companies and their insurers often invest in high-powered attorneys to help them avoid the financial impact and damage to their reputation that comes from producing and distributing a dangerous product. You deserve to have a compassionate and experienced motor vehicle defects and recalls lawyer on your side who can offer a deep understanding of this area of the law and a willingness to explore — and explain — the legal options that are available to you based on the facts of your case.
Ochs has a unique, four-step approach to helping clients that includes:
- Thoroughly researching every detail of your case.
- Devising a strategy and plan of action for litigation.
- Providing professional advice on possible outcomes.
- Standing by your side until justice is served.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, our law firm wants to hear your story to help you obtain maximum compensation. We have locations in Casper, Wyoming, Idaho Falls, Idaho, and more. Get your most urgent questions about your personal injury case with a free consultation now. Contact us online or by calling 307-739-3959.