Healy Scanlon Law Firm

Safety related defects and auto recalls in Chicago


Read the news these days, and it may not be unusual to hear of yet another auto recall. In fact, since 1966 approximately three million motor vehicles have been recalled. Other auto-related recalls include those of tires as well as other pieces of equipment. Recalls take place in order to fix safety defects. Unfortunately, auto recalls may come too late for many consumers in Chicago who have already been injured by a defective motor vehicle.


The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is the agency that makes the rules regarding motor vehicle safety and that has the ability to require a recall if these rules are violated by an automobile manufacturer. This authority comes from the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. In general, safety-related defects occur in automobiles or specific pieces of equipment that pose a safety danger and that are present in a group of automobiles that are of the same manufacture or design.

There are many different types of safety defects that could exist in a group of motor vehicles. For example, a defect in a vehicle's steering system could cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle, leading to an accident. In addition, defects in accelerator controls could also affect a motorist's ability to control the vehicle. Sometimes it is a wheel that is defective, particularly if they become cracked or broken. Other types of defects include windshield wipers that do not work properly and seats that fall back. Defects in a vehicle's wiring system could lead to a fire. In addition, air bags that improperly deploy can also pose a safety risk.

As this shows, there is a wide variety of components in an automobile that could be defective. Recalls are very important in keeping motorists safe from defective vehicles. However, sometimes an individual will be injured in an accident involving a defective vehicle before the vehicle is recalled. When this happens it may be advisable to speak with a Chicago products liability attorney who can educate consumers further on their legal options.

Source: FindLaw, "Auto Recalls: The Basics," Accessed Jan. 11, 2016

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