There are ongoing class action lawsuits against Takata, a Japanese automobile parts manufacturer, over defective airbags the company sold. Numerous automakers have also been named in the suits. Now, the lawsuits are expanding to include a new airbag manufacturer and other automakers.
According to Law.com, lawsuits are now targeting airbags made by ZF-TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. This follows an April 2019 announcement of an expanded investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The new claims are similar to those raised in the Takata lawsuits. Plaintiffs allege that ZF-TRW, Hyundai, and Kia knew about the defect that can cause serious injury or death. The defendants are said to have known of these problems as early as 2011. In particular, they allegedly knew of crashes in which the airbags failed. Despite knowing about the defective airbags, the lawsuits contend, the defendants sold the bags and the vehicles with them anyway. Some cases even allege a conspiracy among the defendants to hide known defects from the public.
In the Takata case, at least 20 people have been killed and many more seriously injured by airbag explosions. The company replaced a safe chemical used to deploy the bags with a cheaper, more volatile one. The chemical can become unstable over time, especially in high humidity locations, and can explode upon impact or other activation. The defective bags explode almost like a bomb – spraying the driver and passengers with metal shrapnel. Some have observed that the deaths and injuries are similar to those sustained in a knife or gun attack. Injuries include:
- Eye injuries, including blindness
- Vocal cord damage or loss
- Scrapes and bruises
- Blunt force trauma
- Neck, spinal, and brain damage
- Bone fractures, including to ribs and sternum
- Other serious injuries due to shrapnel
Numerous makes and models of vehicles with the Takata airbags are subject to an ongoing recall. The federal government is maintaining a list of affected vehicles.
You can search this website using your car’s Vehicle Identification Number. You can also contact your automobile dealership for questions and to have repairs made at no cost.
If you or a loved one have been injured by an airbag, you could be entitled to financial compensation. Our law firm is actively investigating claims related to defective airbag injuries. To help substantiate your case, you should document your injuries and expenses as much as possible. Collect and preserve hospital, medical, and prescription drug records. Also gather photographic or repair records which may document the extent of the defect. This information can come in handy when you meet with an attorney to explain what happened.
The types of losses for which you may be compensated include the following:
- Past, present, and future medical bills and related expenses
- Lost wages due to time missed from work
- Lost and decreased earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Special accommodations for your injuries, such as home health care assistants
Individuals who have lost family members may also receive compensation for the following losses:
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of support and services
Contact a Product Defect Attorney Today
Product defect lawsuits can be extraordinarily complex and require familiarity with the legal system. The airbag cases continue to develop as more potential defendants and defective products are identified. To help recover from your losses, you need an experienced product defect attorney. Our lawyers will research what happened to you and will advocate for your interests. Contact the attorneys at Gacovino, Lake & Associates P.C. for a case evaluation today.