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Motor Vehicle Defects Center

Motor Vehicle Defects Center

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Frequently Asked Questions About Motor Vehicle Defects

Q: What is "crashworthiness?"

A: Crashworthiness is the ability of a vehicle to prevent injuries to the occupants in the event of a collision.

Q: What kinds of things affect a vehicle's "crashworthiness?"

A: The vehicle's size, design and safety features such as seat belts, airbags and crumple zones all affect its crashworthiness.

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A used-car dealer has a duty to discover and repair any obvious or reasonably discoverable defects in a vehicle.

You Have a Right to Drive a Safe Car

At Laminack, Pirtle & Martines, we believe that auto makers must be held accountable for the safety of people driving their cars. If a product fails and causes an injury, they must be held liable for full and fair money damages to the victim.

Driven by Results…Guided by Experience

We invite you to learn more about auto product liability on this page. Contact us to discuss the specifics of your accident and your injuries. We offer the dedication and commitment to your cause that you can rely on.

Motor Vehicle Defects - An Overview

In general, motor vehicles are safely designed and carefully manufactured. Some, however, are carelessly made or improperly designed. Poorly designed or defectively produced vehicles can be dangerous and can cause serious injury or death. If you or a family member has been injured in an automobile-related accident caused by a defective or poorly designed component, contact Laminack, Pirtle & Martines in Houston, Texas, today to schedule a consultation with an experienced products liability attorney who can advise you about the rules that apply in Texas to your situation.

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The Concept of "Crashworthiness"

The most important concept in vehicle defect liability cases is "crashworthiness". Crashworthiness is the ability of a vehicle to prevent injuries to the occupants in the event of a collision. During a collision, a vehicle's occupants are subject to a number of forces that can result in injury, including rapid deceleration and rapid acceleration, depending on the direction of impact in the collision.

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Elements of a Motor Vehicle Defect Claim

Unlike an ordinary personal injury claim for negligence, in order to establish a vehicle manufacturer or seller's liability for a vehicle defect, you do not need to show that they were careless, and that their carelessness led to your accident or injury. Instead, liability in motor vehicle defect cases is controlled by the doctrine of strict liability.

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Vehicle Safety and Restraint Devices

Vehicle safety is a significant consideration, both in terms of liability for injuries resulting from automobile accidents and when the average consumer is shopping for a new car. Every new passenger vehicle must meet federal standards specifying minimum safety levels, but this doesn't mean all cars are equally safe. There still are important safety differences. Identifying the safest car on the road is impossible, but it is possible to shop for a safer car because some vehicle characteristics are inherently safer than others, and many automakers offer safety features beyond the required minimums.

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Motor Vehicle Defect Recalls

One of the most common vehicle defect issues faced by the public is that of safety recalls of a motor vehicle. Safety recalls are usually instigated by either the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or the vehicle manufacturers themselves in response to a discovered defect in a vehicle or a component of that vehicle. So it is important to understand the procedure that is followed in vehicle recalls and the respective responsibilities of those involved.

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Motor Vehicle Defects Resource Links

Consumer Complaints Search Engine
Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) tool to search for or file consumer complaints about vehicles, equipment, child safety seats and tires.

Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Guide for Consumers
An FTC auto guide for consumers.

The Insurance Institute For Highway Safety
News and data related to vehicle safety, including testing and vehicle ratings.

Searchable database of automobiles with mechanical or safety issues filed with the U.S. Department of Transportation.

National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA)
Consumer information and guides to used cars values.

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Laminack, Pirtle & Martines
5020 Montrose Blvd, 9th Floor
Houston, TX 77006-6533

Phone: 713-292-2750
Toll free: 800-805-2778
Fax: 713-292-2755
Email Firm | Map / Directions

The personal injury litigation law firm of Laminack, Pirtle & Martines provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout Texas, including communities such as Houston, Galveston, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Pasadena, Deer Park, Baytown, Texas City, Bay City, Corpus Christi, McAllen, Harlingen, Victoria, Conroe, The Woodlands, Austin, San Antonio, Dallas, Fort Worth, Irving, Plano, Carrollton, Waxahachie, Longview, Nacogdoches, Huntsville, College Station, and Waco, Texas.

Whether you live in East Texas, Southeast Texas, the Rio Grande Valley or along the Gulf Coast, Laminack, Pirtle & Martines is the law firm to call when you have been injured or lost a loved one in an accident caused by someone's negligence. In addition to Texas, we handle cases in Reno and Las Vegas, Nevada, as well as Louisiana communities such as Lake Charles, Alexandria, Lafayette, Baton Rouge and New Orleans.

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