On a September afternoon in 2016, Benjamin and Kristi Reavis of Dallas, Texas were traveling south on North Central Expressway with their 3-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter in the sedan’s back seat.
While stopped in traffic, they were hit from behind by a motorist in a Honda Pilot and within seconds their children, safely belted in child safety seats in the back, suffered life-long and permanent head, brain and skull-crush injuries.
The impact from the rear-end collision caused both the front seat backs to collapse, forcing mother and father’s heads back and directly into the heads and skulls of their two small children behind them.
A Dallas jury would find clear and convincing evidence of gross negligence against Toyota, the parent company of Lexus finding that Toyota failed to warn consumers that the front seats can collapse backwards in certain types of rear end collisions and propel front seat passengers into the second seat. According to CBS This Morning, internal documents showed the cost to fix the front seats were around a dollar.