Truck Defect Recalls
After a major truck accident that causes injuries, there may be more than one party to blame. While a truck driver may be partially or fully to blame, it is important to investigate and look at all of the possible angles when deciding whether to bring a lawsuit. In some cases, there may be truck defects that caused or contributed to the accident. Trucking manufacturers should issue recalls if there is enough evidence to show that a product presents a significant danger. If you suspect that a truck defect recall may have had something to do with an accident in which you were injured, call the Chicago truck accident lawyers at Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca.Claims Based on Truck Defect Recalls
Trucks may be recalled for numerous reasons. Trucks have been recalled because of the combustion of tube welds that resulted in trucks catching fire, bolt failures and defective pivot pins that resulted in trailers detaching from semis while on the road, defective tires, intake duct rubber cushions falling off trucks, fuel line defects that permit fuel to leak onto hot engines and cause explosions, and air leaks in the emergency brake system.
Often, recall notices are sent in the mail. However, in other cases, the recall is only available on the Internet. Generally, in Illinois, there is no post-sale duty to warn of defects. Some manufacturers do issue recalls anyway to allow trucking companies all over the country to make necessary repairs. When a trucking manufacturer voluntarily undertakes the duty to notify a customer (the trucking company) about safety issues or does a recall, it might voluntarily undertake a legal duty to the plaintiff. Voluntarily undertaking a duty in Illinois requires an affirmative recognition of the duty by the party that undertakes the duty and a showing of the party's intent to undertake the duty. Illinois courts do not impose this duty without a statutory obligation or voluntary undertaking to retrofit. This area of law is complicated, and it is important to consult an experienced attorney about the facts of your specific situation.
Manufacturers and other entities in the chain of distribution can be held strictly liable for truck defects that cause injuries to others through a product liability lawsuit. When strict liability is imposed, you will not need to show that the manufacturer was negligent. Instead, you will need to show that there was a defect of the truck or truck component that was unreasonably dangerous, it caused your injuries, it existed at the time that it left the manufacturer's control, and you sustained actual damages.
Defects may be actionable if they involve manufacturing, design, or marketing. In most cases, truck accidents arise from manufacturing or design defects, rather than failures to warn. Design defects are flaws inherent to the product's design. You will need to show that there was a reasonable alternative design that was practically and financially feasible at the time of the original design and also safer. Manufacturing defects are mistakes in the manufacturing or assembly of a product, such that the finished product deviates from the intended design.
In spite of recalls being issued, trucking companies may not replace the defective components that were recalled. If you were injured because a truck company failed to replace a defective component after getting a recall notice, it may be possible to recover damages from the truck driver, the trucking company, the manufacturer, or possibly all three.
If you are able to establish the liability of one or more parties after a truck accident, you can recover compensatory damages. These are damages intended to compensate you for economic and noneconomic losses, including medical bills, lost wages, alterations to your home as a result of catastrophic injuries, lost earning capacity, pain and suffering, and lost enjoyment of life.Get Advice from a Truck Crash Lawyer in Chicago or Beyond
If you are injured due to an ignored truck defect recall or a failure to issue a proper truck defect recall, you should consult an experienced Chicago attorney. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca, we also represent people in Aurora, Springfield, Champaign, Rockford, and Quincy, as well as other cities in Cook, Kane, Sangamon, Champaign, Winnebago, and Adams Counties. Contact us online or call us at 312-263-6330 or toll-free at 800-444-1525 for a free consultation.