Auto Accidents: Who Is Liable When An Airbag Doesn’t Deploy

01 Jul
auto accidents near Orlando

Auto Accidents: Who Is Liable When An Airbag Doesn’t Deploy

Airbags in a car are designed to save and protect individuals who are in auto accidents. However, what happens when an airbag does not deploy? The Orlando Car Accident Lawyer at Injury Assistance Law Firm is here to ensure that you have all the information you need when it comes to filing a claim. We are conveniently located near Orlando. 


How Are Airbags Supposed To Work

Airbags perform when used in combination with seat belts. They are not intended to replace seat belts. In a head-on collision, airbags inflate, stopping your upper body from hitting the windshield, steering wheel, and dashboard. When your car hits a solid object, it activates a sensor. The sensor sends out an electric current. The current then triggers the release of non-toxic nitrogen gas that causes the airbag to inflate.


Both frontal and side-impact airbags are generally designed to deploy in moderate to severe crashes and may deploy in even a minor crash. The driver-side airbag ignites and inflates in 20-30 milliseconds, and the passenger bag takes 30 to 40 milliseconds. After deploying, the airbag deflates, to avoid the risk of suffocation.


Did you know that in 2016, an estimated 2,756 lives were saved due to the use of frontal airbags in passenger vehicles? This number is amazing and leads individuals to believe that an airbag will always protect them from the inevitable. However, when airbags fail because of defective design, materials, or manufacturing, people may suffer serious or fatal injuries.


What If Airbags Fail During Auto Accidents

In the event that an airbag fails to deploy in an injury-producing crash, the incident should be reported to NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation.


There are several factors involved in the activation of an airbag, including the nature of the crash (e.g., speed, other vehicles involved, impact direction); the design of the airbag system, and the location of the crash sensor. Airbags are not intended to deploy in all collisions. For example, the airbag may not deploy if:

  • The crash impact was not severe enough to trigger inflation of an airbag. By design, airbags are not supposed to fire in minor “fender-benders,” because a seat belt provides sufficient protection, and an airbag deployment may do more harm than good.
  • When the vehicle detects a child, or another small-statured person, or no occupant in the right front passenger seat, some advanced frontal airbag systems automatically turn off the passenger airbag. This is also true if the system detects a child or small-statured person in the passenger seat who is sitting too close to the side airbag.
  • NHTSA recommends that airbags always be replaced promptly after a deployment. However, in a used car, the airbag may not have been replaced after a deployment.


Call Our Orlando Car Accident Lawyer Today

What happens if your airbag never deploys in auto accidents? We are here to help. At The Injury Assistance Law Firm our personal injury lawyer is here to ensure you are updated when it comes what you need to do in a car accident. We are the best injury attorney near Orlando! Call our Orlando car accident lawyer today for more information.

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