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Airbag Injury: So Much for Protecting Me

Posted on: February 6, 2017 by Edwards & Patterson Law

airbag injury

Airbags are, by design, intended to prevent injury when an accident occurs. Sometimes, however, there are accidents where the risk of injury is minimal, due to low-impact or the speed at which the vehicles are travelling. Basically, when the airbag deploys, it can have a significant impact on whether an injury occurs during an accident. Technically, an airbag failing to deploy is also considered an airbag injury. If the airbag had deployed as it should have, the argument can be made that the injury would not have happened. However, airbags deploying incorrectly is much more common than an airbag not deploying at all.

Types of Airbag Injury

There exist a multitude of likely injuries that can result from airbags. By design, airbags are manufactured in a uniform fashion. Obviously the manufacturer cannot account for the height or weight of every passenger, for instance. Passengers under the height of 135cm, which is the category that most children under twelve fall under, are more likely to suffer from an airbag injury in a crash.

Cosmetic injuries, such as cuts and bruises, are the most common type of airbag injury. However, you can suffer more serious injuries, which include fractures or spinal damage. Other internal injuries are also possible, as the result of an accident involving an airbag. The liver, brain, spleen, and inner ear can suffer the impact of an airbag deploying incorrectly.

A very common injury, which most people fail to associate with the deployment of an airbag, is dermatitis. A chemical reaction or the effects of abrasion can cause dermatological issues, which require treatment and medication. As such, the sufferer incurs medical costs resulting from a feature which is supposed to protect you in the event of a crash.

Proving Liability

Proving liability in the event of an airbag injury, on the part of the manufacturer, is difficult. The manufacturer will seek to argue that the airbag reduced the potential for injury. So, if the airbag deployed as intended, the manufacturer is not liable for any injuries suffered during a crash. Without sufficient evidence that the driver was not negligent, or that the airbag was defective or deployed incorrectly, the burden of proof rests with the plaintiff.

A lot of modern vehicles have monitoring devices, which record data on speed, whether passengers are wearing seatbelts, or if breaks were deployed correctly. These devices are generally referred to as “black boxes,” and perform similar functions to their aviation namesakes. A black box device can help you prove that you were not negligent, and that the injuries you incurred were a direct result of how and when the airbag deployed.

Personal Injury Claims

Due to the difficulty in proving an airbag injury, coupled with the issues you will face in establishing liability, it is important to consult with a personal injury lawyer immediately after your accident. Gathering evidence at the scene, documenting injuries, and recording the impact of the injuries you suffered will help support your case.

A personal injury lawyer can also bring in experts, who can carry out investigations and reconstructions to establish exactly how the accident happened and who was at fault. At Edwards-Patterson, we have the experience and legal knowledge to help you win, if you have been the victim of an airbag injury. Call today for more information on the process of claiming compensation.

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  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
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