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Defective Air Bags Cause or Worsen Injuries in an Auto Accident

January 21, 2017

Recalls of Defective Air Bags Confirm - Defects May Cause or Worsen Injuries in an Auto Accident

Air bags are meant to protect drivers and front-seat passengers from potentially devastating consequences of a front-end or front-side collision. Statistics show that air bags are 14% effective at saving lives in a serious accident. However, in 2016, safety inspectors discovered that this may not be the case for millions of cars in which air bags made by the Japanese manufacturer, Takata, have been installed. Tests have shown that this manufacturer's airbags can explode when deployed with too much force. The explosion causes a metal canister inside to shred, sending shards of metal throughout the automobile's passenger compartment. Injuries resulting from defective air bags are uncommon. Still, hundreds of people have been injured; sixteen have tragically died to date.

On January 19, 2017, the Associated Press reported that 13 automakers are recalling an additional 652,000 vehicles in which these defective air bags were installed. The current recall is just the latest round for the troubled manufacturer. To date, a total of 19 automobile manufacturers have recalled over 42 million vehicles in which 69 million inflators were installed.

The types of injuries that can result from the deployment of a defective air bag range from minor to devastating. The head, torso and legs of both the driver's and front-seat passenger's body are exposed in a head-on or front side collision, the very type of collision that bags are intended to address. Air bags are designed to deploy rapidly, minimizing potential whiplash from front-to-back jerking motion and potential injuries that might result from impact with the steering wheel, dashboard, windshield or side door panels. However, if an air bag is defective, or deploys improperly, the air bag itself can worsen or even cause serious injury, chronic health conditions and premature death. The types of injuries a defective air bag can cause include, among others: cuts, bruises, abrasions and swelling to the face, chest and upper body, knees or internal organs; fractures, strains and other blunt trauma injuries to the skull, face, cervical and thoracic spine; concussions, loss of consciousness and other traumatic, sometimes permanent, injuries to the brain; burns to the face, chest and hands; punctures and traumatic bruising of the spleen, liver, kidneys and other internal organs; internal bleeding; temporary or permanent loss of hearing; and damage to the heart and lungs. The most serious of these injuries, like brain trauma, can last a lifetime. Others can take weeks or months to heal.

Researchers have discovered that injuries from defective air bags are exacerbated whenever the driver or front-seat passenger is not wearing a seat belt. These two safety devices are meant to work in tandem. Not wearing a seat belts only increases the risk of serious injury from a defective or defectively deployed air bag. While there is no way to predict when anyone might be involved in a serious accident, it is always wise to use seat belts and practice defensive driving to minimize the risk from additional injury from a defective air bag.

Put Our Law Firm's Over 38 Years of Legal Experience to Work For Your Accident Claim!

If you have been injured in an auto accident, and believe a defective air bag may have caused or worsened your injuries, you you should contact our attorneys at Montlick & Associates. With more than 38 years of experience, our firm continues to provide legal representation to clients who have suffered catastrophic injuries from a variety of accidents. Our Georgia Car Accident Attorneys fight for the rights of their clients to the fullest extent possible. 

Our law firm has over 38 years of experience in representing car accident victims across Georgia and in the Southeast. Contact us to schedule your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.


Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law

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Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333
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Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.