Items that are designed to keep you safe should do just that – protect you from injury or further harm. But when the very item meant to protect does harm, the manufacturer can be held accountable. When dangerous products are discovered, alerting the public to the dangers is only the right thing to do. Houston readers might have heard that a Texas woman along with several others that are challenging the safety of a product that is used nationwide.
Guardrails are used to keep cars on roadways in the event of an accident. They prevent cars from going over hills, into water or other areas that could turn a minor accident into a tragic one. On each end of a guardrail is an end terminal or guardrail head. When working properly, the terminal end sweeps a car to the side; however, some of these terminals, manufactured by a company out of Dallas, are not working correctly. Instead of sweeping the car, they are piercing the cabs of vehicles, turning what might have been minor accidents into tragic events. Several people have been killed and several others maimed because of the performance of the terminals.
The company is facing several lawsuits, from both families of individuals who have died and from passengers who were seriously injured. The suits claim that the company changed from using five-inch terminals to four-inch terminals, and this has led to the injuries. The company denies doing anything wrong and insists that the four-inch terminals are just as safe as the original five-inch end terminals.
Although the company could be correct in the fact that the terminals are safe overall, this does not mean they cannot be held financially responsible for the instances where the guardrails failed to operate as they were meant to. Anyone who is adversely affected by a product that malfunctions has the right to seek compensation for their losses. Medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering are some of the options for relief that could be available. An experienced legal professional can help those people in this situation determine what help could be available to them.
Source: WPTV, “A guardrail system lining national highways is raising questions about safety and effectiveness” Jacob Carpenter, Nov. 25, 2013