Everyone would like the financial comfort to go buy a new car every year. Most of us can’t budget for anything close to that, even in good years. With the recent slowdown in the U.S. economy, more households are trying to cut large-ticket expenses, and that means the family car has to stay in workable condition longer than anyone might like.
The average age of the cars and trucks on U.S. roads has now risen to a record 10.8 years. Of course, no vehicle works for that long without a few problems developing. Auto repair and maintenance shops have found their businesses flourishing, as more customers choose to repair their worn-out vehicles rather than visit the new car showroom.
Great mechanics can do wonders with a older car. But when a car has defective replacement parts installed as part of routine maintenance or a repair job, your vehicle can become a death trap. When the defective part fails at a critical time, everyone in the vehicle will face a risk of serious—or even fatal—injury.
Who is liable for injuries from defective auto parts?
Defective vehicle parts can be dangerous in themselves. They can also be dangerous when a part fails during a critical driving emergency. Consider the variety of North Carolina vehicle injuries that might happen due to any of these mechanical failures caused by defective auto parts:
- Exhaust system leak into the vehicle
- Steering failure
- Stuck accelerator pedal
- Brake failure
- Defective doors or door locks open in traffic
- Tire blowouts
- Failure of brake lights or turning signals
- Electrical system fires
- Defective airbags deploy without cause
- Defective airbags fail to deploy in a collision
It’s possible that your mechanic or auto shop should be held responsible for a critical vehicle failure. After all, shouldn’t the repairman have recognized that the replacement part wasn’t any good? However, in most circumstances the manufacturer of the defective part should be held at fault for critical design flaws, shoddy workmanship, or substandard materials in the product.
Manufacturers, in turn, often try to shift blame onto consumers, saying that they have misused the vehicle or placed unusual wear and tear on the parts. However, the key issue here is merchantability: under the law, an item sold must be suitable for the ordinary use for which it is intended. If manufacturers offer car parts for sale that just can’t work as needed, they can—and should—be held accountable for any injuries that follow.
Look to Speaks Law Firm for help
If you have been injured in an auto accident in New Hanover County due to a defective vehicle part, you need an ally on your side. The attorneys at Speaks Law Firm are ready for that job. We can get in touch with automotive engineers and safety experts to prove to a jury that your injury was an inevitable result of the manufacturer’s decision to market a defective product. We can demand access to internal company records to prove that the manufacturer knew of safety risks. We can insist that you receive the full compensation you deserve.
At Speaks Law Firm, every client is our most important client. Call our Wilmington trial lawyers toll-free at 877-593-4233 today. Ask for a free consultation with an attorney, and we’ll send you—at no charge—a copy of our book, The North Carolina Auto Injury Book.