Riverside Seat Back Failure Lawyers are here to help victims who have experienced injuries, traumatic experiences, or have lost loved ones as the result of a car accident resulting in a seatback failure.
When automakers intentionally put out defective cars on the road for the sake of profit, the consumer bears the cost of safety. Not only is this unfair, but this is also unjust and automakers must compensate individuals who have been hurt by their defective automobiles.
Get the help you need right away. Contact the experienced Riverside personal injury attorneys at Bisnar Chase for a Free Case Consultation.
We have obtained successful verdicts and settlements in Riverside seat-back failure cases on behalf of injured victims and their families. We know what it takes to fight against large automakers whose negligence causes these types of catastrophic product failures.
Call us at 951-530-3711 for a Free Consultation.
Tragic Injuries and Fatalities
According to the Center for Auto Safety, 64 adults and 50 children die each year as a result of collapsing seatbacks.
One of Bisnar Chase’s clients, Jaklin Romine, was paralyzed in a 2006 Pasadena crash in which her seat collapsed. Romine is a powerful voice now for victims and consumers calling for change.
We secured a $24.7 million verdict for Romine, which stood on appeal by the defendant, Johnson Controls, manufacturer of the seat. Romine’s seatback collapsed during a rear-end collision at a street intersection.
She suffered catastrophic head and spinal cord injuries in spite of wearing a seatbelt because her seat broke on impact, collapsed backward causing her body to submarine rearward under the seatbelt and shoulder restraint. Her head hit the back of the rear passenger seat causing her to suffer severe injuries that left her a permanent quadriplegic.
Seeking Legal Support
Victims of seatback failures have the right to pursue financial compensation for their losses. Depending on the cause of the crash, they may be able to file a personal injury claim against the driver responsible for the collision and a product liability claim against the auto manufacturer.
When an individual is killed in a seatback failure accident, their family can pursue compensation for their loss by filing a wrongful death claim against the automaker.
A successful claim should include financial compensation for all the losses suffered in the accident, including medical bills, pain, and suffering, lost wages, loss of earning potential, the cost of rehabilitation services, and other related damages.
Many preventable injuries occur each year due to weak and defectively designed seats and their components. Poorly designed and manufactured seatbacks, recliner mechanisms, and seat tracks put drivers and passengers at risk of devastating injuries.
Seat backs play a significant role in the seat restraint system of the vehicle, and when they fail to work correctly, occupants can suffer life-changing neck, head, and spinal cord injuries.
What is Seatback Failure?
Seatbacks are an integral part of a vehicle’s restraint system. They work with seat belts and airbags to keep occupants in place in a crash.
When a collision occurs, a seatbelt will secure an occupant against the seat, an airbag will cushion the driver’s head from the steering wheel, and a seat-back will keep the occupant upright.
If a seat fails to stay upright in the event of an accident, the effectiveness of the seat belt and airbag is virtually eliminated.
Why Seat Back Failures Are Dangerous
An object in motion stays in motion. When a car comes to a sudden halt, the contents of the vehicle will continue to move unless they are restrained by a seatbelt. If a seat fails during a rear-end collision, the driver or front-seat passenger could slip right out from under the seatbelt.
This means that the front seat occupant in the defective seat may fly backward into the rear seat, the rear seat passenger, or even through the rear windshield.
Injuries Suffered in Riverside Seatback Failure Accidents
Front-seat occupants can suffer life-threatening injuries in a seatback failure accident. If the back of the victim’s head strikes the rear seat, him or her can suffer a traumatic brain injury and neck trauma.
In severe cases, victims suffer spinal cord trauma that leads to paralysis.
Those who survive with only serious but not catastrophic injuries may suffer bone fractures, whiplash, sprains, strains, and lacerations.
In cases where the front seat collapses and strikes a rear seat passenger, the injuries can prove fatal and result in wrongful death. Seat-back collapses commonly occur even in slow-speed, rear-end car collisions.
One of the reasons why there are so many seatback failure incidents is because the current seat strength standard was adopted in 1968. Many believe the standard needs to be updated because it only requires seats to withstand an impact of 270-foot pounds.
In comparison, auto manufacturers must install seat belts that can withstand 6,000 pounds of force without failing.
Furthermore, the current testing requirement does not involve real-world crashes. Manufacturers must only measure how much force the seat withstands before failing.
This lack of oversight allows auto manufacturers to cut corners by installing inadequate seats and seat parts that can fail in even low-speed collisions.
When a significant number of people file similar complaints about a specific auto part, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) may conduct an investigation. Depending on the results of their findings, the auto manufacturer may be required to issue a recall.
There have been a number of recalls in recent years involving defective seatbacks. For example:
- Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups from the model year 2014 were recalled for issues with the seat-backs and headrests. This recall involved 18,972 pickups that had seats that moved in the event of a rear-end collision.
- Tesla Model S cars from the model year 2013 were recalled for a weakened connection between the left seat-back striker and the bracket connected to the vehicle’s frame.
- 2012 Nissan Jukes were recalled because they have an incomplete weld that allows the rear seatback striker to become separated in a crash.
- Ford Explorer from the model year 2011 was recalled for possible moving center seatbacks.
Contact our Riverside Seatback Failure Lawyers
In any case, dealing with a seat back accident can be a trying experience. If you or a loved one has been involved in a seatback failure accident in Riverside, contact an injury attorney at Bisnar Chase right away at 951-530-3711.