My Airbags Didn’t Deploy. Can I Still File an Accident Claim?

My Airbags Didn't Deploy. Can I Still File an Accident Claim?

Your airbags are a safety feature meant to protect you in an accident. But what happens when the airbags fail to deploy? Does it mean something malfunctioned? Can it affect your Indiana car accident claim?

Let’s take a look and find out.

How Are My Airbags Supposed to Work?

Airbags have been used in all passenger vehicles since 1998, saving thousands of lives over the years. However, just because you get into an accident does not automatically mean your airbags should have deployed.

Airbags were invented and installed in vehicles as safety devices to protect drivers and passengers in moderate to severe crashes. For frontal collisions, this usually means the vehicle was traveling at least 10 to 16 mph. So if you are involved in a minor collision, the force of impact might not have been strong enough to trigger airbag deployment.

When airbags do deploy, they inflate in less than 1/20th of a second. They are typically tucked away behind panels marked with “SRS,” which stands for Standard Restraint System.

Today, electronic control units are installed that detect when a crash has occurred, which triggers a chemical reaction that inflates the airbag with a harmless gas. When this happens, the airbag breaks through the panel, providing a “softer” and more forgiving surface for the driver or passenger to potentially hit their body against.

My Airbags Didn’t Deploy. Why?

There are a few reasons why an airbag might fail to deploy:

  1. The force of impact from the collision was not strong enough to trigger the airbag sensor.
  2. The airbag sensor was turned off or disconnected: Newer model cars with advanced airbag systems provide the option to manually turn off the airbags.
  3. The airbag system was faulty, or there was a malfunction with the sensor.
  4. The airbags were improperly installed.
  5. The airbag wasn’t replaced after a previous collision triggered it.

Can I File a Defective Airbag Lawsuit if My Airbags Didn’t Deploy?

If you were injured in an accident and those injuries were more severe because your airbags failed to deploy or did not deploy properly, then you may be entitled to compensation through a defective airbag lawsuit. Defective airbag lawsuit settlements can compensate you for things like your medical expenses and other financial losses resulting from a faulty airbag and the injuries sustained.

Potentially liable parties that you can file a defective airbag lawsuit against include:

  • The vehicle manufacturer
  • The airbag and airbag sensor manufacturer
  • The party responsible for installing the airbags
  • The party responsible for replacing the airbags after a previous collision
  • The car dealership or the distributor that delivered the car to the dealership

However, it’s important to note that holding one of the above parties liable will not be easy. Most companies, like vehicle manufacturers, have their own teams of lawyers and insurance companies in place to protect them. So if you want to win your lawsuit, you will need to work with an attorney of your own to build a strong case against the guilty party, which includes obtaining certain evidence that can be used to prove that the airbag was defective.

Can I File a Regular Accident Claim Even if My Airbags Didn’t Deploy?

If you were injured in a car accident due to someone else’s negligence, such as another driver, you could also file a claim against that driver to recover compensation. Even if your airbags did not deploy, you are still entitled to compensation for your injuries if the accident was someone else’s fault.

In some cases, you may have a valid claim against another driver for causing the accident as well as the party responsible for the defective airbag—if the airbag didn’t deploy when it should have. If the airbag didn’t deploy because the impact was not strong enough, however, you can still file a claim against the other driver responsible for the accident if you sustained an injury or other potential damages as a result.

In either case, working with an attorney is recommended. Insurance companies are notorious for trying to find ways to deny claims and or undervalue settlements. With an attorney on your side, however, you can build a stronger case against the at-fault party and ensure their insurance company pays you the full and fair settlement you deserve for the damages you have suffered.

Consult With an Indianapolis Car Accident Accident Lawyer

At Poynter & Bucheri, we have years of experience helping Indianapolis clients file their claims and win high-value settlements. If you were in an accident and your airbags didn’t deploy, get in touch with someone from our team as soon as possible. We can review your case and offer you guidance and support to ensure the best possible outcome.

Don’t hesitate — an experienced Indiana car accident lawyer can assist you right away. Call 1-800-265-9881 for a free case review.