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The elements of a products liability lawsuit

In our last post, we highlighted an additional automaker that was under investigation for providing potentially defective airbags. While this may lead authorities to another recall, the overriding concern is likely the chemical compounds that are being used to inflate the airbags.

A recent article featured in the Atlantic suggests that Japanese airbag manufacturer Takata has been using a dangerous chemical, ammonium nitrate, to inflate its airbags, and that it knew about the potential dangers of using the substance instead of a different accelerant. 

Further, it is suggested that Takata switched to ammonium nitrate from another substance because the former was cheaper; and thus more attractive to automakers because it would help in reducing the cost of building cars. All of these elements are important in supporting a products liability claim.

While it remains to be seen whether a class action lawsuit will be brought against Takata or any other airbag maker, it should be known that these manufacturers have an ongoing duty to ensure that their products are free from dangerous defects that could put consumers in danger. If such a manufacturer knows about these defects and fails to take reasonable steps to correct them, and a consumer is injured by a defective product, the manufacturer could be held liable.

This would allow an injured consumer to seek compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, and a host of other things depending on the severity of the injury.

In the meantime, if you have been injured by a defective airbag, an experienced personal injury attorney can help.

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