The Effects of Airbag Deployment In Your Car Accident Claim
August 9, 2022 | Car Accidents
Numerous factors could affect the outcome of your car accident claim. The assignment of fault for the cause of the car crash, the severity of your injuries, available insurance coverage, and the strength of your evidence are just a few of those factors.
A factor that many people do not consider is the effects of airbag deployment in a car accident case. However, whether your airbag deployed could impact the outcome of your personal injury claim, depending on the facts of your case.
Airbags Have Been Shown to Reduce Injuries and Save Lives
From 1987 through 2017, over 50,400 lives were saved because of frontal airbags, according to the NHTSA. The airbags are most effective when the person is wearing a seatbelt.
Airbags reduce the chance that a person is thrown through the front window in a collision. They also reduce the risk of slamming into the steering wheel or dashboard in a car crash.
The airbags are designed to deploy during a moderate to severe collision, so they may not always deploy in minor crashes. When the car collides with another vehicle or object, a signal is sent to the electronic unit that controls airbag deployment. The airbag inflates in less than 1/20th of a second.
Airbags have been standard equipment on all passenger vehicles since model year 1998. The requirement for airbags in SUVs, pickup trucks, and vans began with model year 1999.
Accident Victims Can Sustain Serious Injuries Because of Airbag Deployment
Airbags deploy with such great force that a person could be injured when they come into contact with the airbag. The risk of airbag injuries increases when a person is not wearing a seatbelt.
Reasons for airbag injuries include, but are not limited to:
- The airbag malfunctioned, or it was a defective airbag
- The person was sitting too close to the airbag when it deployed
- A small child was sitting in the front seat
- The sensor failed to trigger the airbag deployment
- The angle of the car crash did not trigger the airbag
- The collision was not strong enough to cause the airbag to deploy
- The vehicle manufacturer made an error that resulted in a defective airbag system
- An airbag deployed too soon or when it should not have deployed
If airbags cause injuries, it is essential to investigate the cause of the airbag injury. It could be a consequence of the car crash, in which the other driver could be liable for the damages.
However, if the airbag was defective or the vehicle maker made manufacturing errors, the company responsible for the defect could be liable. Therefore, you could have a product liability lawsuit separate from the car accident claim against the other driver.
A car accident lawyer can determine the effect of the airbag deployment on your personal injury claim. If you have a second claim against another party, the fault for the cause of your injuries could be challenging to determine. You need an experienced accident attorney who understands how to handle both cases to maximize your recovery.
What Are Common Airbag Injuries in Car Accidents?
Airbags may not cause any injuries during a car crash. However, they could also be responsible for mild to traumatic injuries. The circumstances of the accident and the airbag deployment determine the injuries.
Common injuries associated with airbags include:
- Face and head trauma
- Eye injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Lung injuries
- Neck injuries
- Damage to internal organs
- Broken or cracked ribs
- Spinal fractures
- Cardiac injuries
- Lung injuries
- Abrasions, contusions, and lacerations
- Injury to the eye socket
- Vision and hearing damage
- Musculoskeletal damage
- Soft tissue injuries
- Internal bleeding
It is crucial that you seek immediate medical treatment for car accident injuries. Tell the doctor whether the airbag deployed. Sometimes a physician may want to conduct additional diagnostic tests to determine if you sustained internal airbag injuries.
How Does Airbag Deployment Impact Damages in a Car Accident Claim?
Airbag deployment generally indicates that the collision was moderate to severe. Therefore, the fact that the airbags deployed supports the other evidence that you sustained severe injuries in the accident. An insurance adjuster may offer a higher settlement amount when the airbags deploy.
The fact that an airbag deployed could also help support claims of soft tissue injuries. These injuries might not always show up on imagining tests. However, the airbag deployment could be the cause or a contributing factor in the cause of the soft tissue injuries.
Do not wait to seek legal advice regarding a car accident. The statute of limitations sets deadlines for filing product liability claims (i.e., defective airbags) and car accident lawsuits. Missing the deadline means giving up your right to compensation for your injuries.
Contact the Car Accident Lawyers In Pennsylvania at Marzzacco Niven & Associates For Legal Help With Your Case Today
Harrisburg Law Office
945 East Park Drive, Suite 103 Harrisburg, PA 17111
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833 N. Park Road, Suite 103, Room A Wyomissing, PA 19610