If you were hurt in a crash and your airbag did not deploy, you may be unsure if you are able to seek compensation for your injuries. Depending on your situation, you may have a claim against the vehicle or airbag manufacturer and other liable parties.
Reach out to one of our experienced Windsor-based car accident lawyers today to learn how we may be able to help you. The initial consultation is free and there are zero upfront fees to retain our services.
Below, we discuss a few reasons why airbags may not deploy during a crash, how to pursue compensation due to airbag failure, as well as the kinds of damages that be available in these cases.
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When Are Airbags Supposed to Deploy?
Airbags are generally supposed to deploy in moderate to severe crashes. They may also deploy during some minor crashes, but airbags are not designed to activate in every crash. Airbags are meant to reduce the physical effects of a crash and provide protection in combination with seatbelts.
Once inflated, airbags help reduce head injuries by cushioning the neck and head during the forward movement of a crash. Whether an airbag deploys during a crash depends on several factors, such as:
- How fast the vehicle was moving prior to the crash
- The place of impact (front or side of the vehicle)
- The other vehicles involved in the crash
- The placement of crash sensors in the vehicle
- The design of the vehicle’s airbag system
What Can Prevent Airbags from Deploying During a Crash?
While airbags should deploy when certain crashes occur, there are times when they may not. Problems with the vehicle itself or issues with the airbags can prevent them from inflating during a crash.
Conditions of the Crash
If the crash was not severe enough or at low speeds, the vehicle may not have detected the need for airbag inflation and therefore the airbags did not deploy. Since the sensors for airbags are typically located in the front end of a vehicle, a rear-end crash may also not trigger a deployment.
Faulty Crash Sensors
Any defects in the sensors that detect a crash may prevent an airbag from deploying. This could be due to a flawed design or manufacturing of the airbag, poor calibration or even improper installation.
A vehicle’s airbag system will activate the airbags when it is in a moderate to severe crash. However, defective electrical components may prevent an airbag from receiving the proper signal and inflating.
Airbag Needs Replacing
Airbags should be replaced after being deployed in a crash. If an airbag is not replaced, it will not activate if another crash happens. Aging airbags in older vehicles should also be replaced. An airbag’s lifespan depends on the age and brand of the vehicle. In most newer vehicles, airbags do not expire.
Do I Have a Case If My Airbags Did Not Deploy?
You may have a case if your injuries were caused by airbag failure. When airbags do not deploy in a crash, they can serious and life-threatening injuries such as facial lacerations, broken bones, whiplash, concussions, traumatic brain injuries, soft tissue injuries, vision damage, organ damage or even death.
To prove that an airbag manufacturer, the vehicle manufacturer or another party was negligent and liable for your injuries, you will need to gather evidence to support your claim. This is why having a lawyer on your side is beneficial. He or she will likely reach out to medical experts, engineers or product designers to provide testimony that the airbag should have been deployed.
Your lawyer may also hire an accident reconstructionist to recreate the scene of the crash and determine why the airbag did not deploy. Perhaps it was due to a wiring issue in the airbag’s system.
To help build a strong case for compensation, it is also important that you do the following:
- Take photos of the crash scene, inside your vehicle where the airbag should have deployed, and any visible injuries you sustained
- Write down everything you remember about the crash while it is still fresh in your mind
- Obtain contact information from everyone involved in the crash, including eyewitnesses
- Keep track of all injury-related expenses, such as bills for hospital stays and doctor’s visits
What Kind of Damages Could I Recover for My Injuries?
Determining the value of a case involving airbag failure is complex, as your claims’ value will depend on factors unique to your situation:
- The extent and severity of your injuries
- The cost of your medical expenses
- The cost of future medical care you may need
- Your anticipated recovery time
Once these multiple factors are taken into consideration, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries. This may include compensation for:
- Medical treatments
- Income lost from missing work
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Physical disfigurement
- Diminished quality of life
Talk to an Experienced Lawyer About Your Legal Options
If your airbags did not deploy and you were hurt in a crash, you may have grounds to take legal action. Our firm has represented many injured crash victims over the decades and is ready to do the same for you. To date, we have successfully recovered millions of dollars in compensation on behalf of our clients.
You can discuss your claim with one of our lawyers during a free initial consultation with no obligation to move forward. If you have a viable case, there are no upfront fees. We only get paid if we help you win.
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