Is Your Car Dependable and Safe?

When we get behind the wheel of our car or truck, we depend on it to perform well in spite of the demands of the road. And yet, every day, motorists just like you are involved in serious accidents due to defective vehicle parts. Too many people are driving a defective vehicle which could cause serious accidents with injuries. There have been a record number of defective automobile recalls in recent years. Even though manufacturers issue most of their recalls, they typically happen after problems are reported and people have been injured.

At Neale & Fhima, our seasoned Southern California defective vehicle and Lemon Law attorneys have represented many clients who have been forced to deal with serious, life-threatening injuries due to a faulty vehicle part that caused a serious accident. If you’ve been hurt in a wreck that was caused by a defective part, or if a loved one has been injured, or even killed in a recalled vehicle, we can help make sure the manufacturers are held responsible for those injuries and other legal damages.

Every Day it Seems There’s News of another Carmaker’s Recall

In 2014, 62 million U.S. vehicles were recalled, according to Consumer Reports. That’s 25 percent of all the cars on U.S. roads.  Some of the largest in automotive history include:

  • Toyota’s Out-of-Control Gas Pedals in 2009 & 2010 – After 30 wrongful deaths, Toyota recalled nine million vehicles in model years 2004-2010.
  • The Takata Seatbelt Recall in 1995-98 – 8.3 million vehicles: Numerous models made by Honda, Nissan, Chrysler, Mitsubishi, GM, Mazda, Suzuki, Subaru and Isuzu between 1986 and 1995. Cost of the recall was more than $1 billion
  • Ford and GM Ignition Problems: Ford’s affected vehicles (8.7 million 86-89 models) were recalled in the early 90’s due to short circuiting and overheating. And in 2015, GM had its own ignition recall. The initial recall involved 800,000 small cars, but eventually the recall affected nearly 30 million vehicles, and compensation was paid for 124 wrongful deaths.

And we all remember the recall of 6.5 million Firestone tires in 2000 — the second largest tire recall in U.S. history — in response to complaints that they were linked to fatal crashes involving sport utility vehicles — primarily Ford Explorers. The vast majority of these events were in the southern U.S. states of Arizona, California, Florida and Texas. It was later discovered that there was a direct correlation between heat, tire tread performance and the Explorers’ suspensions.

We also note two 2017 recalls of autos with faulty brakes. Volkswagen recalled nearly 770,000 cars worldwide in July due to a problem with their braking control systems that necessitated a software update. And in April, Tesla recalled nearly two-thirds of its vehicles made in 2016 (53,000 Models S and Model X) over defective parking brakes

Another publication, Your Car Mechanic, ran the numbers and came up with the Top 10 Most Recalled Car Brands since 2004. The top three were:

  1. Ford vehicles have been the most recalled. Many involved the popular F-150 pickup truck for transmission issues and the about-to-be-discontinued Ford Flex for problems with its driver’s side airbag.
  2. Chevrolet has experienced several widespread recalls. In addition to its recent ignition recall, there have been nearly a dozen others involving its power steering systems.
  3. BMW’s X5 SUV has seen several recalls for braking concerns, Takata air bag inflators, engine stalling issues, and other problems. But the German/US automaker has gone above and beyond with their recalls, issuing them when the smallest of problems have been noted.

Rounding out the Top 10 we find:

  1. Toyota
  2. Dodge
  3. Honda
  4. GMC
  5. Nissan
  6. Volvo
  7. Mercedes-Benz

Airbags and Small Children

Though airbags have been in vehicles for around 40 years, needless injuries still occur. The most vulnerable are passengers who weigh less than 100 pounds. This includes many children and infants. Violently inflating airbags can seriously harm them within a zone extending as much as 18 to 24 inches horizontally from the instrument panel toward the child or safety seat.

The ongoing Takata airbag recall, where the devices suddenly burst forth for no reason, has amplified this defect. The brutal “shock” of deployment delivers a massive blow to a young child in the passenger seat, regardless of whether or not the child was wearing a seatbelt or is safely strapped into a protective car seat or booster. A variety of serious injuries can occur to young children, many of which can be permanently debilitating, and even fatal.

Have you Been Injured by a Faulty Vehicle?

The experienced personal injury attorneys at Neale & Fhima are able to help if you or a loved one has been injured in a faulty vehicle accident. Take action to secure fair and just compensation for the injuries that you’ve suffered. We offer free, confidential consultations to accident victims throughout Southern California. Reach out to us today for a free review of your case by calling (949) 661-1007, or contact our personal injury attorneys online.