The purpose of airbags is to protect passengers. Because of the overwhelming benefits associated with airbag usage, its installation in all new vehicles, trucks, and SUVs became mandatory in the United States in 1999. However, there have been complaints that several ARC Automotive airbags have blown instead of deploying regularly, sending metal debris flying into the interior of the car. Therefore, not only are there legitimate worries that ARC Automotive airbags can not protect car passengers in the event of a disaster, but they can also lead to serious damage or even death for accident victims involved in even small collisions.
If you were hurt by an airbag in an accident, you should know your legal rights. As we’ve mentioned in other posts, it’s the responsibility of automakers and parts makers to ensure their wares are safe for consumers to use. If an airbag malfunctions and someone is seriously hurt or killed as a result, the airbag’s manufacturer might be held responsible. A qualified defective airbag attorney should be consulted immediately by anybody considering filing a claim against ARC Automotive. Give them a call at 866-778-5500 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation.
ARC Automotive is a manufacturer that was founded in 1949 in Knoxville, Tennessee, and has since expanded to employ around 1,700 people and produce approximately $337 million annually. All of the following airbag models use inflators made by ARC Automotive on the driver’s side, passenger’s side, side, curtain, and knee:
If an airbag is not installed correctly, it can be a danger to passengers in the car. Airbags are designed for adults and teenagers, which is why they are installed in the front seats of cars. Backseats do not have airbags, so children 13 and under should not be sitting in the front seat to avoid contact with one in an emergency. As mentioned earlier, if an airbag is not installed or manufactured correctly, it can pose a danger even to adults and teenagers. For instance, 24 fatalities and over 400 injuries have been associated with the current Takata airbag recall.
Know your legal options.
Typically, airbags inflate to prevent passengers from significant impact in the vehicle during a crash. Reports from consumers claim that ARC Automotive airbags do not deploy properly but explode instead. ARC, however, rejects these allegations and defends the security of its airbags. No recalls of ARC Automotive airbags have been issued as of April 2023 but Auto safety regulators continue to seek answers on the explosive airbag inflators.
Attorneys for victims of ARC Automotive airbag explosions say the company’s use of phase-stabilized ammonium nitrate (PSAN) in its toroidal stored gas hybrid inflators is to blame for any possible defects. Compressed gas is housed in a metal canister in an airbag inflator. A second chemical substance, a propellant, is also housed inside the inflator. PSAN is used in ARC Automotive airbags to warm the gas within the canister. When the airbag is exposed to high temperatures, the gasses trapped inside it quickly expand, causing it to “deploy.”
The problem is that ammonium nitrate may cause the airbag to explode if it inflates too much in response to an impact, no matter how little. In the event of an airbag canister explosion, the metal airbag canister may be shredded, sending debris hurtling into the vehicle’s interior at high velocities.
There are around 30 million automobiles in the United States equipped with airbags manufactured by ARC Automotive. The most up-to-date information indicates the following vehicle types and brands use ARC Automotive airbag inflators: GMC Acadia, 2013-2017; Audi A3, 2015-2020; Volkswagen Jetta, 2018 & 2019; Ford F-150, 2015-2017; and Ford Mustang, 2015 & 2016.
Even though some of these automobile companies have issued recalls on certain models due to potentially dangerous airbags, consumers believe that the great majority of vehicles with these airbags are still on the road.
Owners of the aforementioned models may safely presume that their car is equipped with an ARC Automotive airbag inflator. ARC Automotive, however, sold inflators to businesses not included in the report. To find out whether the airbag inflator in their car is faulty and potentially hazardous, consumers who suspect they have a defective airbag should contact a qualified airbag defect attorney.
Those who have been seriously hurt or lost a loved one due to injuries sustained by an airbag may be able to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer if the airbag itself was faulty. These types of strict liability personal injury lawsuits sometimes include product liability allegations. With strict liability, the onus of proof of negligence on the part of the maker is removed from the shoulders of those injured by the product.
Victims still have the burden of proof to establish that the allegedly faulty item, in this example, an airbag deflator, caused or contributed to the accident or placed the victim in a situation where the victim incurred more severe injuries than the victim would have otherwise experienced. Helping accident victims make informed decisions and successfully pursue a claim against the manufacturer is the specialty of an experienced airbag product liability attorney. Give us a call at 866-778-5500 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation.