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Product Liability: 2003 Ford Ranger Faulty Airbag

Obtaining the counsel of a product liability attorney after an accident will often save you a lot of aggravation. In 2005, Hazel Campbell was a passenger in a 2003 Ford Ranger traveling in Boyd County, Kentucky. She had her whole life ahead of her. Unfortunately, like so many Americans, she placed her trust for car safety in seatbelts and airbags. When her husband, Ken, lost control of their truck on the icy highway, it struck the concrete wall of a bridge head-on. Regrettably, the Ranger's airbag failed to deploy and, even though Hazel was restrained by a seatbelt, she sustained a severe closed-head injury, requiring surgery to relieve three hematomas on her brain.

"One would naturally assume that a car manufactured and sold as recently as 2003 would offer some level of protection for something as common as a head-on car crash on an icy road," noted nationally recognized defective product lawyer John Bisnar. "We're not asking for miracles here. Hazel Campbell was wearing her seatbelt properly in a car equipped with a reasonably advanced airbag system. She should have survived this car collision with just minor injuries."

The Campbell's subsequently filed suit against Ford Motor Company. The suit alleged that their Ford Ranger was "equipped with an airbag safety restraint system," that the car crash severity exceeded the threshold required for the airbag to deploy, yet it did, in fact, fail to deploy, resulting in severe injuries to Hazel Campbell.

The lawsuit blames Ford's negligence for Campbell's injuries, pain and suffering. According to the suit's allegations, "Ford had a duty to design, manufacture and market the Ford Ranger so that it would provide consumers, including Hazel Campbell, with reasonable protection during a foreseeable collision such as the subject collision." The allegations also continued in that Ford "had a duty to warn consumers, including Hazel Campbell, of any unreasonably dangerous conditions in the 2003 Ford Ranger." Ford breached these duties by "negligently designing, manufacturing, marketing and selling the Ford Ranger so that it was unreasonably dangerous." The suit further allege that, "Ford's negligence was so wanton and willful as to evidence a conscious disregard of the rights and lives of others, including Hazel Campbell."

Said nationally recognized auto product liability lawyer, Brian Chase, "According to an analysis of NHTSA's accident database conducted by the Kansas City Star, between 2001 and 2006, 1,400 people died in front-impact car accidents after airbags failed to deploy. And this number did not count car accidents involving side-impact crashes where the airbag failed, nor did it count fatal car crashes that involved impacts to the left or right fender, nor car accidents where victims died after being ejected, nor when a car crash involved a vehicle rollover."

Campbell and her husband, Ken sought $5 million compensation for medical care and treatment, pain and suffering and other consequences of the injury, and $15 million as punitive damages. Ford eventually came to terms with the Campbell lawsuit and the details remain undisclosed.

"Hazel Campbell demonstrated enormous courage after her car accident," said Brian Chase. "Deciding with her husband to confront a huge car maker like Ford is no easy task. Hazel suffered a severe physical and emotional injury that will last the rest of her life. Ford's failure to design an air bag system that prevents injuries in such a foreseeable car accident defies reason. Our hope is that these lawsuits, and the many lawsuits we have filed against car makers will convince them to improve their cars and make them safer for drivers and passengers alike."

If you or a loved one has suffered serious injuries as the result of a defective auto part or vehicle, contact the experienced California auto products liability attorneys at Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys for a free consultation. We will use our extensive knowledge and resources to achieve the best possible results for you and your family.


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Disclaimer: The legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Any results set forth here were dependent on the facts of that case and the results will differ from case to case. Bisnar Chase serves all of California. In addition, we represent clients in various other states through our affiliations with local law firms. Through the local firm we will be admitted to practice law in their state, pro hac vice.

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