What to Do If Your Car Accident Is Caused by a Defective Part

Most car accidents directly result from driver error. Distracted driving, failure to yield the right of way, reckless driving, and speeding are all major causes of car accidents. However, some car accidents happen because a defective auto part that’s meant to function as part of an important system—like a car’s steering system or brakes—causes the driver to lose control.

When a negligent driver causes an accident, a car accident claim against their insurance recovers compensation for the victim’s damages like medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering, but what if no driver bears liability for an accident? What happens if the fault lies with a defective auto part?

When a Car Accident Claim Becomes a Defective Product Case

Manufacturers are strictly liable for any damages caused by defective products they have produced, marketed, and sold. When an investigation after a car accident determines that the accident happened because of a defective auto part, the car accident claim becomes a defective product claim against the automobile manufacturer or the manufacturer of the defective part. Unlike car accident claims against at-fault drivers, the injury victim does not have to prove negligence against a manufacturer. Manufacturers bear strict liability for any harm caused by a product with a design defect, manufacturing error, or inadequate instructions and labeling.

Many personal injury attorneys have experience in both car accident claims and defective product cases. When a defective product causes a car accident, the two types of claims overlap.

What Types of Defective Auto Parts Cause Car Accidents?

Some auto part defects are simply irritating, like a faulty sound system or a check engine light that won’t turn off. Still, some defective auto parts can cause serious accidents or result in worse injuries in an accident. The most common defective car parts named in car accident claims include the following:

  • Brake systems
  • Steering systems
  • Tires
  • Accelerators
  • Airbags
  • Seats
  • Seatbelts
  • Ignitions
  • Clutches
  • Headlights/taillights
  • Vehicle frames
  • Gas tanks
  • Fuel systems
  • Wiring
  • Transmissions
  • Engines

If an accident occurs due to a defective car part and the motorists in the car with the defective part, or motorists in another vehicle in a collision, suffer injuries due to the accident, the manufacturer of the part is liable for damages.

What to Do After a Defective Part Causes an Accident

After a car accident, you should always contact a car accident attorney if you or a loved one suffered injuries. Before you leave the scene of the accident, use your phone to snap quick photos of the accident scene and damaged vehicles if you’re able to move without causing further injury. Add the contact information of any eyewitnesses to the accident. Then, go directly to the hospital and undergo a complete evaluation. Ask for a detailed medical report. Save all of your medical bills and receipts for related expenses. These become important evidence in a defective product case against the manufacturer of a faulty car part that causes an accident.

Call Shaw Cowart for Your Defective Auto Part Claim

Accident claims caused by auto part defects can quickly become complex and require careful handling and testimony by the best expert witnesses to explain the defect and its impact on the accident’s cause and injuries. This type of case needs a skilled attorney to represent your rights and safeguard your best interests throughout the process. Speak to an accident lawyer in Austin today.