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Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer > Georgetown Airbag Lawyer

Georgetown Airbag Lawyer

Millions of people drive vehicles with defective airbags every day. When these airbags fail, the Georgetown airbag lawyers at the Stanley Law Group obtain the compensation these victims need and deserve.

Well-designed and well-made airbags that work properly have saved many people since this technology debuted in the 1970s. Today’s airbags are also much more advanced than the early models. Passenger and side curtain airbags now protect almost all vehicle occupants, not just drivers.

Airbags reduce the risk of head injuries and other serious injuries. But they do not eliminate this risk. Placing an airbag on a steering wheel is like putting a balloon on a steel girder and running into the girder at 60mph. The airbag cannot possibly absorb all the force.

Furthermore, airbags are very delicate instruments. If they inflate too quickly, the steering column explodes. If they do not inflate quickly enough, they provide much less protection. Additionally, if the outer layer is too thick, the airbag pins the victim against the seat. If the outer material is too weak, the victim’s head plunges through it.

Georgetown Airbag Lawyers and Legal Responsibility

As mentioned, millions of people drive to and from work or school every day in vehicles with airbags that could seriously injure or kill them. Most of the defective airbags are Takata products.

For decades, almost since its invention, Takata was one of the leading airbag producers in the world. It made airbags for cars and trucks built in America, Japan, South Korea, and other parts of the world.

Usually, the chemical propellant is the airbag’s key component. The chemical must remain inert for years or decades. Then, it must fill an airbag in an instant without causing an explosion.

At first, and for many years thereafter, the company used a stable and reliable, yet expensive, chemical propellant. Then, mostly to save money, Takata began using cheap and unstable ammonium nitrate. Timothy McVeigh used this same compound to build the truck bomb that devastated a federal office building in Oklahoma City in 1995.

Takata eventually stopped making these airbags and paid a $1 billion fine. However, only a fraction of that money compensated victims.

Responsibility for an airbag injury could lie elsewhere as well. Mechanics received little money to do repairs, so they often did subpar work. Furthermore, if a prior owner received a recall notice, the owner had a duty to find the current owner and notify him/her of the recall.

Mass Tort Litigation Issues

Basically, a “mass tort” is a product, like a defective airbag, which could injure hundreds or thousands of people. “Litigation” is not an event, like a trial. Instead, litigation is a process, and this process is different in mass tort cases.

Usually, judges consolidate these cases, at least for pretrial purposes. Hundreds or thousands of piecemeal claims would overwhelm the judicial system.

Class actions are complete consolidations. Courts grant class action status based on the number of claims, the exact factual and legal similarity of individual cases, and the ability of one Georgetown airbag lawyer to speak for all other victims.

MDL (Multidistrict Litigation) actions are partial consolidations. The MDL collects all similar mass tort cases into one court, as is the case with Camp Lejeune water poisoning cases in neighboring North Carolina. A single judge rules on pretrial motions and oversees other pretrial activities, like discovery and settlement negotiations. If a case does not settle, the MDL court usually sends it back to its originating court for trial.

Mass tort procedural issues add another lawyer to a case that’s already very complex. Most product manufacturers are offshore holding companies.

Work With a Diligent Georgetown County Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced airbag lawyer in Georgetown, contact the Stanley Law Group. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.

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