Though Florida law requires car makers to design airbag systems to be safe, sometimes defectively designed airbag systems can cause severe injury and even death to vehicle occupants.
To be deployed in time to cushion car crash impacts, airbags must inflate at speeds of up to 200 mph. If the airbag system is defectively designed so that the car crash victim’s head or body contacts the airbag before it is fully inflated, the airbag can severely injure a person.
Car makers have a legal duty to design airbags in conjunction with other safety features so that if the seat positioning is set in a reasonable manner then the occupant’s body will not impact the airbag before it fully inflates. Airbags must work in conjunction with seat tracks and seat belts to do this.
A smartly designed airbag must be fully inflated and actually begin deflating somewhat at the time a person contacts the airbag for the airbag to properly protect car wreck victims. Defectively designed seat belts can be one factor that throws off that critical timing. Another factor is defectively designed seat tracks.
Defective seat belts allow a person to move too far forward in a crash so that the person impacts the airbag before it fully deploys. Likewise, defective seat tracks allow vehicle occupants to move their seat so far forward toward the airbag that the airbag does not have enough time to fully inflate before the person’s body impacts the airbag.
The one factor in common among every person severely injured or killed by an airbag is that they were very close to the airbag at the time of the crash.