Product Liability

Lebanon Injury Lawyers Handling Defective Auto Parts Claims

Auto defect and recall attorneys in Mt. Juliet, Cookeville, and Middle Tennessee

Recalls occur when products are taken off the market for safety reasons. The manufacturers can initiate the recall voluntarily, or the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) can require the manufacturers to issue a recall. The manufacturers must come up with a way to repair or replace the defective part. They are required by law to contact the current owner of the truck with the defective part installed to notify him/her about the recall and how he/she can obtain a replacement or a repair at no cost to the owner.

The Lebanon injury attorney team at Lowery, Lowery & Cherry PLLC, represents clients who have sustained injuries in commercial truck and car accidents related to defective or recalled parts. We understand the complexity of investigating these crashes and holding negligent drivers, parts manufacturers, or sales departments accountable for your injuries. You can come in for a free consultation to discuss your legal options. We accept cases on contingency, so you never pay attorney fees until we have recovered compensation for you.

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How do defective parts cause vehicle accidents?

Automobiles and trucks are usually assembled and built using parts manufactured by other companies. If any link in this manufacturing, production, and supply chain is weak or fails, the end product can be defective – with potential tragic accidents and injuries for drivers and passengers.

Large commercial trucks, for example, like tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers are massive, complicated pieces of heavy machinery. Commercial truck drivers must take specialized training courses before they can get a commercial driver's license to operate these vehicles safely. All the critical systems in a commercial truck must be carefully maintained, and the driver and the trucking company are responsible for making sure that the truck is in safe working condition before every trip.

The following are a few examples of defects that can lead to serious truck accidents:

  • Brakes, which must be in safe working order on any type of vehicle, but with a massive truck, defective brakes can cause significant destruction.
  • Defective brake lights create a huge safety hazard for the vehicle behind a large truck.
  • Tires are another vital system on any vehicle. A tire blowout on an 18-wheeler can mean disaster for the other vehicles nearby on the road.
  • Defective steering systems, a vital component to ensuring that the driver can control the direction of the vehicle.
  • Faulty hydraulic systems keep the mechanical systems of the truck functioning safely. A defect in the hydraulic system can cause a truck accident.
  • Defective trailer hitches which couple the trucks to the trailers. If a hitch is defective and fails, and the truck and trailer jackknife or become uncoupled, it can lead to serious consequences.

Examples of recalls for defective truck parts

The NHTSA maintains a database of motor vehicle recalls, which include monthly recall reports. Some examples of past commercial truck defective part recalls have included:

  • Mack Trucks, Inc. for possible fire danger or engine failure risk
  • Daimler Trucks North America LLC for incorrect mounting of rear disc brake calipers
  • Morgan Truck Bodies LLC for defective wiring harness
  • Mack Trucks, Inc. (Mack) for an electrical overload condition
  • Daimler recalls for faulty brakes
  • Paccar recall of trucks due to defective transmission software

Common causes of car recalls

The number of cars recalled for various reasons between January and March of 2018 was larger than the number of cars recalled in all of 2017 – and those numbers keep increasing. Some of those cars may have been recalled for things like improperly-worded manuals, but others had serious, critical defects due to the risk of life-altering injuries in a crash. Some of the more common reasons why cars are recalled include:

  • Issues with fuel injector lines
  • Electronic malfunctions
  • Wiring problems
  • Defective tires
  • Defective airbags
  • Tendency to catch on fire (often due to reasons listed above)
  • Fault brake lines or pads
  • Defective car seats and safety restraint systems

Which car models have been recalled for defective parts?

The NHTSA also keeps track of recalls affecting passenger vehicles, including cars, lightweight trucks, pickups, and the like. You can check for your own vehicle here.

The most recent recalls have affected:

  • Honda, for faulty Takata airbags
  • Audi, for potential fire hazards involving the fuel lines
  • Mazda, for defective airbags
  • Ford, for slipping gear shifters
  • Dodge pickups, for malfunctioning backup cameras
  • Chevy hybrids and electric vehicles, whose cars suddenly lose propulsion
  • Chrysler minivans, for parking brakes slipping out of position

You can access the full list of makes and models here.

What are product liability claims?

Products liability is an area of law which refers to the liability of any or all parties along the chain of commerce for any product for damage caused by the product. The chain of commerce starts with the manufacturer who built the product, the wholesaler, and the retail store owner at the end of the chain. A product that contains an inherent defect that causes harm to the consumer may be the subject of a products liability lawsuit.

In any type of products liability claim, the plaintiff who is the injured party, must prove that the defective product was the direct cause of the injury and that the defendant (the party which built or sold the defective product) built or sold a defective product.

Under the category of products liability claims, there are three types of product defects:

  • Design defects are introduced in the design process
  • Manufacturing defects occur as the product is being produced
  • Marketing defects involve the failure to warn consumers about inherent dangers and inadequate instructions

Sometimes the most deadly, horrific crashes can be traced to a single faulty component that set into motion a chain of events that led to the crash. Truck and car accident attorneys understand how to dig into the details and find out what was the cause of the crash and who should be held accountable for the injuries, the property damage, and other losses from the collision.

Who is liable when a defective auto part caused my accident?

If the crash in question had been between yourself and a negligent driver, you would sue the driver who caused the crash. When the collision involves a collision with a commercial truck, you are dealing with a commercial operation, so you may be suing the truck driver, the driver's employer, the leasing company, or the mechanic. In the case of a crash because of defective parts you would make a claim against the parts manufacturer and/or the seller. If it involves another passenger vehicle – or your own passenger vehicle – it could involve the other driver, the manufacturer, or the retailer.

Your Lebanon defective auto parts attorney from Lowery, Lowery & Cherry is here to find out who is liable for your injuries and losses. Our legal team fights to make sure that you obtain financial compensation for your damages which might include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Medical expenses
  • Disability
  • Lost wages
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Emotional distress

A skilled Lebanon injury lawyer will fight to make sure that you receive compensation for your injury caused by defective parts. We never charge you attorney fees until we recover compensation for you, and we offer free, initial consultations where we evaluate your case, discuss options for strategies for your case. We will answer your questions and offer guidance for next steps.

Injured by a defective auto part? Contact our Lebanon lawyers today

When you discover that the accident that caused your injury was caused by defective brakes or any other defective parts, you may have questions about how you might pursue compensation. When you work with the skilled Lebanon injury lawyers at Lowery, Lowery & Cherry, you enjoy the benefit of our more than 70 years of combined legal experience at work on your behalf. Please call us at 615-454-9404 or complete our contact form to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case. We help clients like you in Lebanon, Mt. Juliet, Cookeville, Nashville, and throughout Tennessee.