Defective Car or Car Part: A Serious Fault of Car Manufacturers

Posted by on Jul 5, 2016 in Dangerous Products & Drugs | 0 comments

Defective Car or Car Part: A Serious Fault of Car Manufacturers

In 2014, two car manufacturing companies issued recalls on their vehicles due to defective parts discovered in them. One of the firms, Nissan had to recall nearly a million of its vehicles due to unreliable front passenger air bags; General Motors, the other firm, recalled 2.4 million of its sedans due to faulty taillights. This was not the only recall that General Motors had to make, however. There was still its 26.9 million vehicles which had a defective ignition system. Though alarmingly big, this number was just half of the nearly 53 million vehicles worldwide (about 34 million are in the US) that had to be recalled due to the explosive air bag inflator from Takata Corp. This recall is the biggest auto-safety recall in the history of the car industry.

Hundreds of different recalls have been made in the past by vehicle manufacturers due to defective parts or parts that malfunctioned. Some of these defects were a transmission shift cable that detaches, power steering that fails, fickle tail/brake lights, a seat belt cable that fails to provide proper restrain, front seats that do not detect occupants (which would result to air bags not deploying during an accident), electronics that can disable front and side curtain air bags and seat belt pretentioners, and so forth.

Some recalls are made by vehicle manufacturers – this is called a voluntary recall. Many others are made through a court order instigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Recalls are necessary when vehicles or vehicle parts turn out to have a safety-related defect or fail to comply with minimum safety standards set by the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and Regulations.

The Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and Regulations are guidelines that need to be complied with by manufacturers of motor vehicles and vehicle parts. The FMVSS was issued by the NHTSA for the purpose of protecting the public against defective cars and malfunctioning parts which increase risk of injury or death during crashes. These guidelines specifically detail the minimum safety performance requirements for motor vehicles and parts, especially those parts that affect a vehicle’s safe operation, such as the brakes, lights and tires, and those that will keep drivers and passengers protected from fatal or serious injuries, like child restraint, air bag, safety belt, energy absorbing steering columns and motorcycle helmets (these federal standards cover all types of vehicles and vehicle parts).

Defective cars and malfunctioning parts are manufacturing mistakes or flaws in vehicle design. According to the Schuler, Halvorson, Weisser, Zoeller & Overbeck, P.A. law firm, these mistakes are results of careless or negligent acts to which manufacturers should be held responsible, especially in compensating the damages suffered by those who were harmed by their defective product.

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