Cars, trucks, and, SUVs are the most popular means of transportation in the United States (and most countries worldwide). If a car malfunctions due to improper maintenance, a faulty part, or a manufacturer error the results can be devastating. Some of the most famous product liability cases in United States history involve car manufacturers using faulty parts and in some cases, doing everything they can to cover up their mistakes.
As car accident lawyers, we have heard our fair share of tragedies involving defective automobiles.
First, we need to clarify the difference between a defective vehicle and one that is poorly maintained. A poorly maintained vehicle has issues caused by either its age and no longer being able to work properly or a vehicle that malfunctions after a professional performs maintenance or a repair.
When you think of defective cars, you might think of clunky noises and annoying whirring sounds. However, there are other ways in which a car can be defective, and this can have a major impact on your safety if you’re driving it.
If a car is unsafe to drive, the manufacturer will typically recall it and repair it before selling it again. However, if you have purchased the car second-hand, or it was not recalled in time, then you will need to take extra care when driving it so that you do not put yourself or others at risk of an accident.
For example, if a car has a faulty accelerator pedal that sticks open or closed or doesn’t return fully to neutral when released, that car is considered unsafe to drive until either the problem is fixed or the accelerator pedal is disconnected completely. Even if your accelerator pedal does not feel loose and seems to return to neutral when released, if it does not also come back up after acceleration from a standstill – then this could indicate something is wrong with your gas pedal and render your vehicle unsafe to drive until either the problem is fixed or the gas pedal is disconnected completely.
Related: Most Common Causes of Car Accidents
A defective vehicle is usually a car, truck, or SUV that was not assembled properly or was built with a faulty part.
Since the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act was created in 1966, over 390 million vehicles recalled due to safety issues and defects.
Many times, the manufacturer will instantly issue a recall on a part or an entire vehicle once they learn of the issue.
If their warning is too late or you ave not yet been made aware of the issue, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the vehicle, the manufacturer of an individual part, or even the dealer who sold you the vehicle.
If you or a loved one was involved in a car accident caused by a defective vehicle, contact the personal injury attorneys at Ortwerth Law for a free consultation.