Drive on any highway in Texas and there’s a good chance you will share the road with vehicles that have unfixed recalls. According to an Auto Remarketing article, one out of every four vehicles in Texas has an open recall. The Lone Star State, in fact, has more open recalls on vehicles than any other state except for California. While it might not seem like a big deal to ignore an open recall notice, these vehicles – left unfixed – pose a serious safety threat to everyone sharing the road.
What are common types of car defects?
An open recall on a vehicle occurs when either a manufacturer or the national Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) determines that a certain model of vehicle has a safety-related defect. A recall may stem from any number of defects, including but not limited to:
- Air bags
- Steering components
- Faulty accelerator controls
- Wiring system problems that could result in a fire
- Problems with fuel system components
- Defective brakes that could fail
- Tire defects that could result in a blowout
Typically, car companies will send letters to vehicle owners notifying them of a recall, but anyone can check the NHTSA website and enter their vehicle identification number to determine if there is an open recall. Repairs for a car on a recall list should be done free of charge by an authorized dealer. If you’re aware of any open recall, don’t take chances by waiting to address the problem. The problem could pose a major hazard.
What happens if I’m in an accident?
An accident involving a car with an open recall can create a complex injury claim. If you get into an accident caused by a defect in your car, you may have grounds for a product liability claim. The manufacturer of the defective part may be liable, but the manufacturer may argue that you were aware of the defect and failed to address the problem. If you never received notice, the manufacturer may argue that you or another motorist caused the accident through driver error.
How can an attorney help?
If you’re in an accident with another vehicle with an unfixed recall, you may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. The other driver may have been negligent for ignoring an open recall notice.
Because car companies, parts manufacturers and their insurance companies will fight back against claims, it’s critical to consult with an experienced attorney if you are in an open-recall accident. A Fort Worth, Texas, lawyer can fight for you and make sure your rights are fully protected. For a free consultation, contact Coby L. Wooten, Attorney at Law, P.C., today.