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Aggressive Lawyers for the Seriously Injured

Westchester Seat Belt Injuries

Seat belts have saved more lives than many other modern inventions. As many as 15,000 lives are saved each year due to the use of seat belts in vehicles. Unfortunately, some seat belts are defectively designed or poorly manufactured. When seat belts fail to work as intended during an accident, victims can suffer serious, life-altering injuries.

woman hand fastening a seat belt in the car

Discuss Your Case With a Seat Belt Injury Attorney

If a defective seat belt has injured you or your loved one in Westchester, New York, you need an experienced personal injury attorney on your side. Attorney Michael LoGiudice has a proven track record of successfully obtaining compensation for car accident victims. He will fight for your rights and represent you throughout the entire process of obtaining the compensation you deserve. Contact Michael LoGiudice, LLP today to schedule your free initial consultation to learn more about your case.

Common Seat Belt Defects

There are several requirements that seat belt manufacturers and assemblers must follow. Despite these requirements, some companies intentionally or negligently fail to follow these guidelines, resulting in the following dangerous defects. 

Buckle or Latch Failure Seat Belt Injuries

When a seat belt is falsely latched, the plate may “click” and feel like the buckle is properly latched. In reality, the seat belt wearer may have inserted the entire buckle but missed the locking mechanism. When the latch fails, the seat belt won’t be fastened correctly, making it effectively useless.

Webbing Seat Belt Injuries

The webbing of a seat belt is made out of material that should be able to withstand the force generated in a motor vehicle accident. If a manufacturing error leads to defective webbing or a sharp object comes into contact with the weapon, the seat belt may fail during the force of the collision, causing injuries.

Retractor Failure Seat Belt Injuries

The seat belt webbing is connected to a retractor in a typical seat belt system. Upon impact, the retractor should quickly tighten the seat belt and hold the passenger or driver in place during the accident. When the retractor fails to tighten correctly or lock into place, the wearer of the seat belt is more likely to be injured.

Spooling and Anchor Seat Belt Injuries

A spooling failure is similar to retractor failure and occurs when the retractor doesn’t wind up the loose webbing. If too much of the seat belt webbing has been unraveled, the seat belt may not be tight enough to keep the passenger or driver protected should an accident occur. The anchor of a seat belt is the part that is bolted to the vehicle. When the assembly line incorrectly installs the anchor or incorrectly manufactures the parts, the anchor may not hold the seat belt in place during an accident.

Injuries Caused By Seat Belt Defects

Defective seat belts can cause many different injuries that could have been avoided had the seat belt functioned correctly during the accident. Seat belts are designed to be worn with the shoulder belt and lap belt across the rib cage and pelvis to withstand the force of the car accident better. When a defective seat belt fails to work correctly during a car accident, the victim may suffer serious injuries, including the following:

  •  Chest injuries
  •  Head and brain injuries
  •  Abdomen injuries
  •  Broken legs and arms
  •  Spine and pelvis injuries
  •  Whiplash
  •  Pinched nerves
  •  Internal bleeding
  •  Stomach pain

Who Is Responsible for Seat Belt Injuries?

If you’ve been injured due to a seat belt malfunction, the first thing you should do is discuss your case with an attorney after seeking medical help. Your attorney can help you gather important evidence for your compensation claim. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to obtain evidence that the seat belt malfunctioned. After a thorough investigation, attorney Michael LoGiudice will discover which party or parties are liable for your injuries. Several different parties may be at fault when it comes to car accidents caused by seat belt malfunctions. 

Holding the Seat Belt Designer Liable

Some seat belt malfunctions are caused by a defective design. A design flaw could increase the chances that the seat belt will malfunction, causing car accident injuries. For example, the design may be considered defective when a designer designs a seat belt in a position that would cause the seat buckle to unlatch upon impact. When bringing a case against a seat belt designer, the plaintiff will need to show that the designer made a product that was likely to be unreasonably unsafe.

Holding the Product Manufacturer Liable

In other cases, the designer designs a safe seat belt, but an error occurs during the manufacturing process that makes one or more seat belts unsafe. When a seat belt is manufactured poorly, it could become unlatched, fail to work, or unattached during a car accident. 

Other seat belt defects include buckle defects that cause the seat belt to fail, too much slack in the seat belt, and seat belts that tear during a car accident. When companies fail to test their products for safety, a manufacturing error that could have been addressed and corrected may happen. In October 2020, Japanese regulators announced that Takata may have produced a dangerously defective seat belt webbing.

Holding the Automakers Liable

Automakers have a legal duty to recall vehicles that have defective seat belts. Unfortunately, some automakers do not recall defective vehicles until many victims have suffered injuries and serious accidents. Fiat Chrysler, Volvo, and Toyota have all recently recalled vehicles due to seat belt defects.

Contact a Westchester Seat Belt Injury Attorney Today

Attorney Michael LoGiudice has extensive experience helping car accident victims who have been injured by defective seat belts. He fights for his clients’ right to compensation for their medical bills, lost income, property damage, pain and suffering, and more. Car accident victims shouldn’t have to worry about being able to afford legal representation, and attorney Michael LoGiudice doesn’t charge his clients a legal fee until he wins. Contact Michael LoGiudice today to schedule your initial consultation. 

The law office of Michael LoGiudice routinely represents seat belt injury victims in the greater New York area including WestchesterPutnam CountyDutchess CountyRockland CountyOrange County, and Brewster.  

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