Faulty seat belts can lead to severe injuries and even death during a car accident. Consequently, repairing them as soon as they are damaged is vital to keep you safe.
The cost-benefit estimates were based on research in the U.S. (MUARC 1992; Williams et al. 2002). The effectiveness figures assume greater compliance among a proportion of the hard-core group of non-wearers.
Faulty Seat Belts Can Lead to Serious Injuries
Seat belts save more lives than any other car safety feature, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Correctly worn, they spread impact forces across the more vital parts of the body—shoulders, rib cage, and pelvic bones—making it much less likely for you to be ejected from your vehicle in a crash.
Unfortunately, seat belts don’t always work as intended. Design, manufacturing, and installation flaws can cause seat belts to fail. The results are often severe injuries that require medical attention and long-term care.
For example, a faulty lap belt can cause seatbelt syndrome, which causes abdominal injuries such as bruising and abrasions. The force exerted on the abdomen can also damage the spleen, which can rupture and cause internal bleeding. A lacerated liver is another common injury caused by defective lap and shoulder belts.
Seat belts can also cause traumatic brain injury (TBI) in an accident, which can lead to cognitive impairment and memory problems. In some cases, TBI symptoms take a while to appear, and a delay in seeking medical help can make your injuries worse.
Consult a product liability attorney immediately if you suffer a seat belt-related injury. An experienced legal team can help you pursue compensation from the liable parties, including manufacturers and other product designers. They can even work with insurers to expedite your claim
Faulty Seat Belts Can Lead to Damage
Wearing seat belts is one of the best things you can do for yourself in a car accident, but keeping them in good working order is essential. If you notice your seat belt is faulty, get it repaired immediately. Defective seat belts can cause severe damage during a crash, and you could be at risk of injuries such as whiplash, internal organ damage, spine injuries, and more.
Whether the fault stems from design flaws, manufacturing defects, or improper installation, seat belts can fail. Some common seat belt defects include inertial unlatching, false latching, weakened webbing, retractor failure, and seatbelt geometry issues.
Faulty seat belts can lead to a variety of injuries, including severe whiplash, spinal damage, internal organ damage, and more. The severity of your injuries will depend on which part of your body was restrained by the seat belt and how forceful the restraint was, so a seat belt receiver replacement is needed. Some of the most common seat belt-related injuries include spleen rupture, abdominal aorta aneurysms, lumbar spine fractures, and cervical spine injuries.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident caused by a defective seat belt, you may be entitled to compensation from your vehicle’s manufacturer. Victims who file successful claims can receive compensatory and punitive damages, including the cost of medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Faulty Seat Belts Can Lead to Death
Seat belts are designed to protect vehicle occupants in case of an accident and can help reduce fatal injuries. However, if the seat belts are defective, they can cause severe damage to the driver or passengers.
Several types of seat belts have been known to fail in accidents, leading to death. One of the most common reasons for this is manufacturer defects in the design and assembly of the seat belts. These flaws can include:
Webbing failure. Webbing is a crucial belt component that withstands sudden force and can prevent occupants from being thrown from their vehicles. Manufacturer defects may lead to webbing that fails under stress or does not eject properly in an accident.
Other defect issues can include:
Retractor failure. The retractor is designed to lock up and secure the belt upon impact. Flaws in the design or assembly of the retractor can lead to it malfunctioning, causing the seat belt to slacken or fail altogether in a crash.
The occupant may suffer severe neck or spinal cord injury, resulting in paralysis or death. Whiplash injury is another possible result of a defective seat belt, which can cause brain bruising, internal organ damage, and a variety of other injuries.
Faulty Seat Belts Can Lead to Insurance Claims
If you are in a car accident and your seat belt fails to function correctly, the impact can lead to severe injuries, including spinal cord injury or wrongful death. If this happens, your auto insurance company may attempt to use your failure to wear a seat belt against you to devalue your claim. In California, this can be avoided by hiring an experienced product liability attorney to handle your case.
Faulty seat belts can cause occupants to be ejected from the vehicle and strike interior surfaces or other occupants, leading to severe and fatal injuries. Seat belts may also fail to contract or retract adequately, placing too much tension on the occupant or releasing too early.
Seat belts designed for larger occupants, such as those over 200 pounds, may strain the abdomen and chest too much. Similarly, smaller-sized occupants can suffer from lap belts that rest too high on their stomachs and shoulder belts that lie across the neck instead of on the shoulders.
Repairing faulty seat belts is usually covered by your car’s warranty. In addition, if your seat belt fails due to a manufacturer defect, you can file a product liability lawsuit against the seat belt’s designer or distributor. Fortunately, an experienced attorney can help you combat the insurance company’s tactics and get the monetary compensation you deserve for your seat belt injuries.