Deadly Auto Defects: From the 1900s to Now
The very first automobile was invented in 1886 and was nothing more than a carriage with a heavy gas engine attached. Ford eventually began mass-manufacturing cars in the early 1910s. At the time, these vehicles could only go around 10-20 mph, but were still dangerous. Without seatbelts or airbags, and incredibly top heavy, death via car crash was common in the early twentieth century.
NHTSA Urges GM Vehicle Drivers to Get Ignition Switches Fixed
In recent months, General Motors’ trouble with faulty ignition switches that have caused serious car accidents and deaths has made national news. Nonetheless, thousands of GM vehicles remain on the road with dangerously defective ignition switches in place, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
As a result, the NHTSA urges owners of the recalled GM vehicles to get them fixed as soon as possible. A vehicle can be taken to any GM dealership, which will make the repair free of charge. Until the repair can be made, GM recommends that drivers “use only the ignition key with nothing else on the key ring,” according to the NHTSA’s website.
NHTSA Recalls 2.1 Million Vehicles for Air Bag Defects
Over 2.1 million vehicles have become the subject of a safety recall recently issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), according to a recent article in the Detroit Free Press. Experienced Colorado car accident attorneys are monitoring the situation closely, familiar with the ways in which hidden vehicle defects can cause or worsen serious injuries.
The recall focuses on a problem that causes airbags to deploy when they are not needed and, in some cases, with excessive force that causes injuries rather than preventing them. As many as six deaths reported to the NHTSA may already have been caused by the defect.
Automaker Honda Faces Fines for Failing to Report Injuries and Deaths
Honda Motor Co’s U.S. subsidiary, American Honda, has agreed to pay two $35 million fines, totaling $70 million, after failing to report hundreds of injuries, deaths, and other complaints related to its products, according to a recent article the Huffington Post.
The agreement follows an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The investigation sought evidence that Honda had violated the agency’s Early Warning Reporting regulations, which obligate automakers to report information about injuries, deaths, damage, and warranty claims within a certain time period.
Airbag Defect Recall Affects Over 3 Million Japanese-Made Vehicles
Four major Japanese automakers recently announced recalls of several models of vehicles manufactured between 2000 and 2004. The recalls were announced in response to evidence of a manufacturing defect in the vehicle’s airbag components, which can cause serious injuries or death if it is not fixed.
The defect affects the operation of the propellant that inflates the airbags in the vehicle if a crash occurs. In some crashes, the airbag may not inflate at all, failing to protect the person in the front passenger seat. In other situations, the airbag may inflate or inflate partially when there is no accident. Since airbags typically inflate quickly and with some force, a person sitting in the front passenger seat or who is entering or exiting the vehicle may be injured due to a sudden and unexpected airbag inflation. Finally, some defective parts have been linked to vehicle fires, which pose risks to everyone in the passenger compartment as well as to those who are outside the vehicle but near it.
Tween Brands Recalls Its Disco Lights Due to Electric Shock Risk
Tween Brands has recalled about 19,100 units of its “Style My Room by Justice” black disco lights, sold at Justice stores. The recall includes both the black disco light sold under style number 900528 and the star disco light sold under style number 901651. Both lamps pose an unreasonable risk of overheating , which may lead to fires, and to electric shocks.
The lamps are about seven inches tall and consist of a four-inch diameter ball with multi-colored plastic panels, which sits on top of a three-inch high black plastic base. The light inside the plastic ball lights up when the on-off switch on the base is pressed, which sends multicolored beams out of the panels. The style number for each recalled light appears in the lower left corner of the product’s label, which is on the back of the package.
So far, Tween Brands has received one report of a lamp overheating and one report of a lamp causing an electrical shock. The lamps were sold at Justice stores and online at www.shopjustice.com between May and November 2012. They were imported by Tween Brands of New Albany, Ohio and were manufactured in China.
Toyota Recalls 7.4 Million Cars Worldwide for Fire Risk
Toyota recently issued a recall of over 7.5 million of its vehicles in multiple countries, stating that all of them faced a similar problem: defective automatic window controls in the driver’s door that could cause a fire. Although the recall follows serious concerns in previous years over Toyota’s safety record, the company is unconcerned, pointing out that ignoring the problem would be much worse than fixing it.
The recall affects 2.5 million cars in the United States, according to the Detroit Free Press. It covers vehicles made from 2005 to 2010, including Toyota’s popular Camry, Corolla, Yaris, RAV4, Tundra, Matrix, and Sequoia, as well as two Scion models.