A car accident in Missouri highlights the role that defective car parts can play in a crash. When something breaks and causes a crash, it is possible for neither driver to be at fault. Instead, the victims of the crash can file a personal injury lawsuit against the company responsible for the defective product in a products liability case.
Blown Tire Causes Car Crash in Missouri
The incident occurred at 8pm on Thursday night, July 12, 2018. A pickup truck was going northbound on U.S. Highway 35 in Daviess County. Unfortunately, one of the pickup truck’s tires suddenly deflated. The sudden lack of tire pressure pulled the truck over the median and into the oncoming lane, just as another vehicle was about to pass by. The result was a head-on collision that made the pickup truck roll over.
The driver of the truck suffered serious personal injuries and was rushed to the hospital. The driver of the other vehicle, surprisingly, was left uninjured in the crash.
Typically, Negligence Per Se Would Likely Apply
Typically, in crashes that involve a vehicle that passed over the median and into oncoming traffic, the legal doctrine of negligence per se would apply. Crossing the median is against the Missouri vehicle code, and so violating that regulation is presumptively negligent. In crashes caused by a vehicle that crossed the median, therefore, the driver who went over the line is presumed to be at fault.
Defective Car Parts Can Cause an Accident, Too
However, when the car only crossed the median because of a broken car part, then it was not necessarily the fault of the driver. Instead, the defective or broken car part was to blame. If this is the case, a handful of people or companies could be held liable for the costs of the accident.
In some cases, liability can pass to the product’s manufacturer. In this case, that would be the maker of the tire that blew, like Bridgestone or Goodyear. They would be held responsible for allowing such a poorly-made tire to enter the market and cause the crash.
In other cases, liability can pass to the person who installed the defective product. For example, if the tire that caused this crash was not installed properly and that is what caused it to blow, the person or company responsible for putting the tire on the pickup truck could be liable for the costs of the crash. This can be a mechanic, that mechanic’s garage, or even the driver of the truck if they were the one to install the tire.
However, in other cases, defective product cases still end with liability falling on the driver. For example, if the tire in this case was so worn out that it was unreasonable to leave it on the pickup truck, the driver could still be held liable for the crash that it caused.
St. Joseph Car Accident Attorneys at the Smith Law Office
The personal injury attorneys at the Smith Law Office in St. Joseph represent victims of car accidents in St. Joseph, Kansas City, Springfield, and throughout western Missouri. Contact them online or call them at (816) 875-9373 if you or someone you love has been hurt in a car accident.