When you purchase a vehicle, regardless of whether it is new or used, you do so with a reasonable assumption that the vehicle is safe and free from serious defects. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.

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Defects in the initial design of a vehicle can lead to serious accidents, injuries, and even death; in many cases, the poor design of a vehicle can also contribute to injuries in a motor vehicle accident.

If you or someone you know has been injured, presumably as the result of a vehicle defect, you may be able to seek legal recourse. At Pogust Millrood, our firm is here to represent you and guide you throughout every step of your personal injury case—beginning with a free initial case evaluation. Contact us today to schedule yours.

Common Types of Auto Defects and Injuries Caused

There are many different types of defects that we unfortunately see on a regular basis, beginning with poor roof/rollover design. This defect is more common in larger, top-heavy vehicles (such as SUVs), but it can apply to any vehicle where the support structures of the vehicle’s roof prove inadequate for protecting occupants in the event of a rollover accident. When this happens, it is common for the vehicle occupants to suffer from serious injuries, including neck and head injuries or even paralysis.

Another relatively common type of auto defect is that of fuel system failure, which usually occurs when a faulty fuel tank design leads to a tank puncture. Under the right circumstances, this can cause a fire to suddenly erupt and engulf the vehicle in flames, putting the driver, occupants, and others sharing the road in serious danger of burns and other types of injuries.

Airbag- and seatbelt-related defects are unfortunately all too common as well. When an airbag fails to activate in the event of an accident, serious neck, head, and other bodily injury can occur to the driver and/or passengers. Likewise, if a seatbelt fails to “lock” at the time of impact, it is also possible for occupants to be thrown from the vehicle and seriously injured.

Some other potential types of auto defects include:

  • defective tires
  • poor side-impact design
  • vehicle door failure

This is by no means a comprehensive list of vehicle defects or their potential injuries, so if you or someone you know was injured as a result of a defect not included here, we still recommend that you reach out to our legal team for further guidance.

Who is Held Responsible for an Auto Defect?

In most cases, the vehicle manufacturer is the entity responsible for a vehicle defect; this is because most vehicle defects are caused by poor design at the top level of production. These manufacturers have a responsibility not just to design and manufacture safe vehicles, but to provide recall notices and corrective action when defects in design are noted.

In some cases, however, a dealership or seller of a used vehicle can be held responsible for a defect that is caused by a substantial modification of the vehicle’s original design.

What Types of Damages Can You Claim?

One of the most common questions people tend to have after being injured as a result of an auto defect is “what types of damages might I be able to claim?” Of course, this can vary from one case to the next, but at the very least, most clients should be able to claim damages related to medical expenses and other costs incurred by the incident. This can include anything from initial medical bills to costs of ongoing treatment. If you were unable to work as a result of your injuries, you may also be able to claim lost wages. In some cases, punitive damages may also be able to be recovered, pushing vehicle manufacturers to re-evaluate their vehicle design and make corrections where needed to avoid future injuries related to the same defect.

How an Auto Defect Attorney Can Help You

If you or somebody you know has been injured as a result of an auto defect, the best thing you can do is to consult with a personal injury attorney who has specific experience and success with auto defect cases. Beginning with a free consultation, an attorney can find out more about the details surrounding your case and then provide you with additional guidance for moving forward. The process of pursuing an auto defect injury claim can be quite complex, which is why having an attorney to guide you through every step of the process can make all the difference.

Ready to schedule your free consultation and move forward with your case? Contact our team at Pogust Millrood to get started. Let us put our years of experience in personal injury cases to work for you.