Have you ever been in a car accident and wondered if a vehicle defect caused it? Unfortunately, defective auto parts play a role in many collisions.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has the job of keeping America’s roadways safe. They are responsible for ensuring that manufacturers issue recalls and repair vehicle defects. Common defects that can lead to safety issues include the following:
1. Seat belts
Faulty manufacturing can lead to defective buckles or webbing, which could fail during a crash. Some of the most common seat belt defects include webbing that is too weak for its intended purpose and buckles that do not latch correctly or may open unexpectedly.
The most common type of airbag defect is related to the timing and deployment force of the airbags. If an airbag deploys too late, it may not protect the occupants sufficiently. Additionally, if an airbag deploys with too much power, it can cause injury or death due to blunt force trauma.
3. Fuel system
Faulty designs in or near a vehicle’s electrical system, gas tank, gas line or other areas can cause fires or explosions that can lead to devastating injuries.
4. Door latch mechanisms
Broken springs, worn hinges and misaligned parts may cause the car door to open unexpectedly during a crash. That can lead to ejections during collisions, which are often fatal.
5. Steering components
Worn-out parts, broken links, misaligned wheels, and faulty cables can lead to loss of control of the vehicle while the vehicle is in motion — putting everybody on the road nearby in danger.
6. Defective brakes
Common problems with defective brakes include worn brake pads, misaligned calipers, loose lines or hoses, and incorrect adjustment. These issues can cause reduced braking power or even complete brake failure while driving.
Car dealerships need to be aware of these potential issues so they can take steps to repair them before selling the vehicle. If you have been sold a defective vehicle and you’ve been forced to pay for repairs out of pocket or the car is undrivable, you may want to explore all legal options.