You have probably been instructed thousands of times over your lifetime to put on your seat belt, and if you are now the parent of young children, you probably utter that same phrase several times a day. We take seat belt safety so importantly because we know that this device saves lives in the event of an accident. Sadly, however, for thousands of drivers a year, defective seat belts lead to catastrophic injuries. When your seat belt, your last line of defense, fails, you could become seriously or even life threateningly injured. Car accident victims that lack the protection of a seat belt could suffer head injuries, spinal cord damage, brain damage and internal injuries, or even death.
Most seat belt failures will be traced to faulty manufacturing or poor design. During an accident, it is imperative that the driver and all passengers be contained within their seat to minimize any injuries produced by the extreme force involved in the accident. Seat belts are designed so as to hold the occupant securely in his or her seat, allowing him or her to safely ride down the crash. Seat belts eliminate or at the very least minimize the driver and passenger’s contact with the windshield, dashboard, steering wheel, and roof.
Some defective seat belts have been known to allow complete ejection of the victim from the vehicle through the windshield. This will often lead to catastrophic injuries or a painful death. In other cases, a defective seat belt will allow the victim to crash into the dash or steering wheel, causing internal organ damage, spinal cord damage, head injuries, or broken bones.
Seat belt defects can stem from any of the following:
- Latch problems;
- Defective belt material or webbing;
- Poor seat belt design or geometry;
- Retractor failure;
- Sensor failure.
The lap belt only design was one of the most dangerous seat belt designs. The lap belt is known to cause catastrophic internal bleeding injuries. Up until the 1980’s, it was not mandatory that shoulder belts be installed in rear seats. Many manufacturers thus used lap belts, and these vehicles are still on the roads today. The most common drivers of these older vehicles include teens, who are already at significant statistical risk of injury due to higher than average accident rates. The lap belts harmfully isolate the impact of the crash to the victim’s mid-section, resulting in internal organ damage that can include lacerated spleen, lacerated liver, paraplegia, spinal cord fractures, quadriplegia, and death.
Contact Kansas City Automobile Accident Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation
Defective safety belts are among the most dangerous automobile defect issues that exist today. Seat belt failure can result from a number of defects, each of which holds the potential to eliminate your last line of defense. If your seat belt fails, you could experience brain injuries, head injuries, spinal cord damage, broken bones, or even death. Kansas Automobile Accident Attorney Michael R. Lawless of the Lenexa, Kansas law firm Michael R. Lawless, P.A. is helping to increase car and seat belt safety, one case at a time. If you have been injured due to a defective safety belt, we will provide you with the experienced, dedicated, and skilled representation you need to obtain the recovery you deserve. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your potential accident case, contact Michael R. Lawless, PA by calling our office locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771. You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.