South Carolina Airbag Defect Injury Lawyers
With every passing year airbag systems become more and more complex. Many systems now monitor seat position and belt use or non-use to determine when and if an airbag deployment is needed in minor to moderate accidents to protect the occupant. With this ever increasing complexity, the ability to identify and prosecute airbag defect claims becomes more difficult.
Airbag injuries occur more often than you would like to think. “Passenger safety” is still one of the main selling points that dealers touch on when you are buying a car and airbags are one of the most important safety features when it comes to keeping you and your family safe.
Even though airbags can save lives, some of them have been causing serious injuries, including:
- Airbags that deploy when they shouldn’t
- Airbags that deploy too slowly
- Airbags that deploy with too much force
- Airbags that fail to deploy
What to do in an Airbag Injury Accident
If you are involved in an accident due to the sudden explosion of an airbag or a defective airbag, make sure to seek medical attention immediately. Then, try to preserve the vehicle and get it inspected as soon as possible after the accident.
Causes of Airbag Injury:
- Crash Censors: Faulty signals can cause airbags to inflate at the wrong time or defective sensors can trigger an air bag after it’s too late.
- Horizontal Inflation Path: Safe air bag designs inflate upwards before extending outwards. Dangerous and defective airbags will extend horizontally.
- Lack of Internal Tethers: Tether straps help the air bag inflate in a flat pillow shape and not a round basketball shape, which is closer to the driver and more dangerous.
Common Defective Airbag Failures:
Inadvertent deployments of airbags
Sometimes an airbag will deploy or “fire” when it is not intended. An airbag deploying in the absence of an accident is a classic example of an inadvertent deployment, and can be the basis of a claim when significant injuries occur.
Late deployments of airbags
Airbags are intended to deploy within milliseconds of the airbag computer sensing that a crash of significant magnitude is occurring. However, sometimes due to sensor placement issues, faulty components, or airbag algorithm problems, the airbag can deploy after it should. Then the occupant does not receive the protection intended until after the forces of the impact have already caused injuries that could have been prevented.
Failure of an airbag to deploy
Most manufactures design airbags to deploy in moderate to severe accidents. The forces required to deploy an airbag in time may do more harm than good when they are deployed in minor crashes. However, as airbags become increasingly complex more and more fail to deploy situations are being seen. In these cases, consumers can sustain injuries that could have been prevented if the airbag would have deployed as intended and designed.
Side Airbag Defects
Side airbags are designed to protect passengers from injury in frequently occurring side impacts, and are most commonly deployed from the side of the seat itself to inflate between the door structures and the occupant. By doing this, airbag designers can minimize the potential for airbag-induced injuries while providing optimal occupant protection. Of course, there are also additional designs that involve the deployment of curtain style airbags that deploy from the roof rails downward to provide the same type of protection to vehicle occupants in side impacts. Such designs, for example, are now commonly used in minivans and SUVs to protect rear seated passengers.
If you suspect the lack of a side airbag to be the cause of a catastrophic brain injury or death, contact us for a free evaluation of your case. Our Defective Airbag Attorneys are here to assist you and your clients in evaluating and pursuing a product defect claim.
Call Today for a Free Consultation
If you suspect an airbag defect to be the cause of a serious injury or death, contact the Strom Law Firm for a free evaluation of your case. 803.252.4800. As airbag defect lawyers we have experience in litigating accidents involving airbags, and stand ready to bring our knowledge to bear for consumers injured by defective airbags.