Charlotte injury lawyers have long been on the front line protecting the interests of Carolinians when it comes to auto accidents and product liability. You can be sure that they are keeping a close watch on the disturbing series of failures by both corporate America and the federal government. In this article, we want to focus on recent recall notices by two of the largest auto manufacturers in the world. The recalls go back as far as 2003 and affect owners of several different models. One company is recalling vehicles for vehicles that have a defect in the air bag system. In some instances, the air bags will not deploy during a crash because the ignition switch has been cut off. Another company has reached a 1.1 billion dollar settlement with the U.S. justice department after admitting to misleading consumers over safety concerns.
Tragically, vehicle owners and passenger have suffered personal injuries and deaths that are directly related to these automobile defects. What is particularly disturbing is that in the case of both corporations, the automakers were aware of these issues over a decade ago, more than a year before the first documented deaths. Equally disturbing is the record of federal regulators from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The NHTSA was established by congress in 1970. Its purpose is to ensure the highest standards of excellence in motor vehicle and highway safety for consumers. In its dealings with the automakers, the regulators raised the possibility of a defect more than once. Despite all the red flags, the NHTSA never opened a broader investigation that would force the automakers to act if the cars were in fact defective.
A number of lawsuits related to the documented deaths have begun to make their way through the court system. The recall notices are still in effect and has been extended to hundreds of thousands of vehicles, so it may take years to determine the full impact of this situation and exactly how it will change the industry. What is clear is that the court system will be hearing cases involving these vehicles in the months and years to come.
Product liability and wrongful death attorneys find these revelations disturbing and increasingly common. It is reasonable to understand that private companies have an obligation to shareholders and investors to make a profit; but that does not override their responsibility to create products that are safe for consumers and society at large. These automakers will seemingly be held accountable for these lapses, and should be under close scrutiny in the future in order to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again.
Government regulators need to be held accountable
There should also be increased pressure placed on government regulators that play an essential role in making certain that our system of public safety works. It is readily apparent that when watchdog agencies fail to do their jobs, the system fails and people are injured or killed. Congress and our courts need to take definitive steps to create penalties that will discourage regulators from favoring the industries they are charged with overseeing.
Depending on your Charlotte injury attorney
Residents of Charlotte, Raleigh, Asheville, and cities throughout the Carolinas have depended on the Olive Law Firm for personal injury, product liability, and wrongful death cases for over 56 years. This means that their accident and injury attorneys will always be ready to work for you and your family. If you or a family member is injured, and you suspect it to be the result of negligence or an act of omission; call the offices of the Olive law Firm for a free consultation with a Charlotte injury lawyer.