Over 163 million (72.8%) of the 224 million automobiles on America’s roads today have driver airbags, and over 144 million (64.2%) of these also have passenger airbags. Another 1 million new cars are being sold with airbags each month.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 18,319 people are alive today because of their airbags (BusinessWeek).
Nevertheless, the question of how safe airbags really are continues to perplex us. Since 1998 all new cars have been required to have driver and passenger seat airbags. Many car companies have outdone themselves by installing door side airbags…Some cars actually have 6 to 8 airbags all around the inside. Statistically speaking, airbags are supposed to reduce the risk of dying in a crash by 30 percent.
Injuries and deaths occur because of airbags, though, especially with children and smaller women. Airbag safety continually undergoes governmental testing with the same question in mind that many of us as…How safe are they?
There have been studies conducted, such as one done by Mary C. Meyer (UGA Statistics Professor) that indicates airbags could actually increase the probability of death in accidents. Her study casts shadows on the studies done by the NHTSA, stating that the deaths they report all occurred from airbags while vehicles were traveling slowly.
How do we know what really happens during these high speed accidents? Rather than losing control of a car, how do we know an airbag didn’t deploy before a collision, actually causing it? If it happens in low speed accidents, couldn’t it happen at higher speeds? Definitely food for thought.
Lately, there has been an increasing number of airbag recalls for being defective. It seems they may not work when you need them to, or they may work when you don’t need them. Over the first 9 ½ months of 2013, automakers have recalled more than 6 million cars because of airbag malfunctioning hazards
These accidents injure motorists, and in one case, killed a driver. It seems that they are deploying at the wrong times, and in some cases, shooting shrapnel when they explode.
Airbags are getting more sophisticated, and cars are containing more airbags than they used to, leading to a recipe of increased malfunctions. According to manufacturers, the problem is not getting better, it’s actually growing.
Airbag manufacturers need to be responsible for the safety of their devices before they are available for consumers. Consumers should not have to become injured or lose their lives before safety is addressed. If you or a loved one has become injured or experienced loss of life due to a defective airbag, you owe it to yourself to consult with experienced airbag safety attorneys at Passen Law. We know what it takes to show absolute proof of an airbag injury and can sort the facts out.
For a consultation to explore your experience to determine if you have a viable case, call the experienced and knowledgeable attorneys at Passen & Powell at 312-527-4500.