Along with airbags, seatbelts are one of the most important safety features installed in modern vehicles, and have saved thousands of lives and prevented many serious injuries in auto accidents. However, defective seatbelts can cause the harm they intend to prevent.Seatbelts serve as a protective restraint across the passenger’s chest and lap, which reduces the risk of the passenger being ejected from the vehicle or thrown from their seat into another passenger or the interior of the vehicle.Seatbelts are also supposed to keep vehicle occupants as safely positioned as possible during an accident. If the seatbelt does not remain secure and allows your body to shift during the crash, that could indicate seatbelt failure.Automobile manufacturers have issued numerous safety recalls for seat belts.
Defective seatbelts are caused by errors during the design, manufacturing, or assembly process. For example, the latching mechanism secures the belt to the seat itself. In rare instances, defective seatbelts can unlatch due to the force of the accident working against an unsecure latch. Also, tears in the fabric of the seatbelt or serious injuries in a minor accident may indicate a seatbelt problem.
When a seatbelt malfunctions, the passenger is often at increased risk for being ejected from the vehicle, or jostled around during the crash or rollover. This can lead to devastating injuries including internal organ damage, internal bleeding, paralysis, and brain injuries like concussion. If you suspect that your seatbelt malfunctioned during an accident and you sustained serious injuries, contact an experienced auto accident attorney who can investigate a potential claim against the automaker. Call or message Scartelli Olszewski today to discuss your potential case.