Injured by Seat Belt Failure?
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers for Auto Defect Victims
Seat belts should protect vehicle drivers and passengers from injuries during auto accidents. Federal law requires automakers to include safety belts in all new vehicles. However, a defective seat belt that breaks mechanically or has a design defect may not only fail to protect vehicle occupants from the force of a car crash but may also inflict additional injuries. These defects generally result from design or manufacturing negligence. Therefore, victims of seat belt injuries can typically file a product liability lawsuit against the automaker regardless who is at fault for the crash.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a defective seat belt, then the car accident lawyers at Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., are here to help you explore your legal options. We have decades of experience fighting for the victims of car accident injuries caused by defective seat belts. In one landmark case, our attorneys obtained a verdict of $55.3 million for a client who sustained a serious spinal cord injury due to a defective seat belt, which ultimately caused permanent quadriplegia.
What are the Most Common Seat Belt Injuries and Defects?
It is always advisable to wear your seat belt while driving or riding in an automobile. However, car defects such as malfunctioning safety belts put drivers and passengers at risk for otherwise preventable injuries. Seat belt injuries can occur during auto accidents due to:
- Lap-belt-only design. This kind of seat belt can cause serious injury to the internal organs and spine during a car crash. Additionally, lack of a shoulder strap may result in head trauma and/or brain injury.
- Malfunctioning latch. If the buckle of your seat belt is faulty, then it may fly open during an auto accident, resulting in severe car accident injuries
- Faulty retractor, leaving slack in the seat belt. Seat belts should fit securely so that occupants are protected from impacting the interior of the vehicle. If there is slack, then you may be at risk for traumatic brain injury from hitting the dashboard, steering wheel or headrest of your seat.
- Non-engaging shoulder harness. The shoulder strap of your seat belt should lock into place during a car crash, preventing you from falling forward. If this mechanism is defective, then you may risk neck and head injury.
- Defective seat belt anchors. Due to car defects, a seat belt may pull free from the floor of the car during an accident.
- Weak belts. If the actual material of the belt itself is not strong enough, then it may rip completely during a collision.
When a seat belt is not securely holding the driver or passenger in place, the impact of the accident can send the person through a window or crashing into part of the interior of the car. This commonly results in severe car accident injuries that would have been much milder or even entirely preventable by proper seat belt design and/or construction.
Hurt by a Defective Seat Belt? Call Our Car Accident Lawyers for a Free Review
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a defective seat belt, then we are here to help. Regardless of the cause of your crash, our experienced car accident lawyers can assist you in obtaining compensation for your seat belt injuries.
We offer free initial claim reviews and handle cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you pay nothing unless your case is successful. Call our offices in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania or Cherry Hill, New Jersey today to schedule your free initial consultation.