Personal injury attorneys representing the family of 57-year-old Mary Lyon Wolfe have helped the family file a products liability action against two Japanese companies that the family believes were instrumental in creating a set of circumstances that resulted in Wolfe dying a wrongful death following a car crash.
At the time of the accident, Wolfe was behind the wheel of her 2002 Honda automobile which was outfitted with a Takata airbag. When the accident occurred, the family believe the airbag in her car deployed with too much force causing a spinal injury that led to Wolfe passing away 18 days after the accident.
Prior to Wolfe’s accident, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration discovered a problem with Takata airbags and insisted that the company recall the vehicles that had the air bags built into them, a recall that should have included Wolfe’s Honda. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the recall included approximately 16 million vehicles. Before the recall, it’s believed that 5 deaths and approximately 130 injuries were connected to flaws with the air bag design. One problem is that the Takata company chose to use ammonium nitrate to help their bags inflate, a decision they made in an effort to reduce production costs. The problem is that in humid climates, such as South Carolina, the ammonium nitrate burns faster which results in a faster and more powerful deployment of the airbag.
Although the recall took place four years prior to Wolfe’s accident, her family sates that she didn’t know about it, the air bag in her car was never repaired.
“They should’ve reported this many, many, many years ago,” the family’s lawyer, Keven Dean, said in an interview. “The problem a lot of families have right now is they’ve put this thing to bed and it’s bringing up old memories… a lot of these vehicles have been lost or destroyed.”
Dean is well versed in the circumstances surrounding the Takata airbags. The law firm he’s a part of, Motley Rice, is responsible for handling a class-action lawsuit for a large group of drivers who own vehicles fitted with Takata airbags.
“It doesn’t matter how large a company is, they still have to be held accountable for their actions,” said Joseph Sandefur, managing partner of a top personal injury firm with an office headquartered in South Carolina. “If a mistake is made and the company learns that the product they produced isn’t as safe as they originally thought, or that it’s not suitable for certain environments, it’s there responsibility to let the owner of every single one of those products is aware of the issue. Sadly, it seems like personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits filed in civil court seem to be the only way to communicate with these large corporations that are more interested in the bottom line than preserving human lives.”
If you have been injured as the result of a faulty product, visit https://joeandmartin.com/ to learn more about your rights or schedule a consultation with a personal injury attorney in your area.