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Billings Personal Injury Law Blog

Product recall initiated for defective fire extinguishers

Montana residents who are seeking to ensure the safety of their home or workplace will make certain that they take steps to have items designed for safety on their premises. However, a problem that is not often thought about is whether the item that is designed to enhance safety is dangerous itself. A dangerous product can come in many forms and that extends to safety products. When there is a safety product that does not work correctly, it can cause double the damage because the initial reason for using it is still happening and is not mitigated by the product. If this happens, those who were harmed should consider filing product defect claims to be compensated.

Most conscientious people have a fire extinguisher on the premises. The goal for this is obvious: if there is a fire or the threat of a fire, the fire extinguisher is there to put it out. However, a problem that is not often considered is if the fire extinguisher does not work properly. A recall of 40 million disposable fire extinguishers manufactured by Kidde was initiated because it might fail when it is needed. These fire extinguishers have plastic handles and buttons that might clog. In addition, the nozzle can detach with sufficient force to lead to a dangerous impact.

Danger of fires from auto defects sparks recall of BMW cars

There are enough dangers on the roads in Montana and across the nation that drivers and passengers do not want to worry about an automobile design defect causing an accident. Unfortunately, it has become commonplace that motor vehicles are not just coming equipped with air conditioning and a wide variety of radio station options, but auto defects as well. When there is a recall or a news story about a potentially dangerous issue with an automobile, people who have been injured or lost a loved one and did not realize it was due to an issue with the automobile must act by considering a lawsuit.

Approximately 1.4 million vehicles are being recalled by BMW because of a danger that they could catch fire. There are two recalls that the company filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. They are for the X3, X5, Z3, 3-series and 5-series models. The initial recall covers more than 740,000 automobiles and is due to the potential short circuiting and melting of an area of the engine. If this happens, it can cause a fire. The vehicle does not have to be running for this to occur.

The right approach after a mining truck accident

With the number of workers who are employed in the mining industry in Montana, accidents are frequently unavoidable. When these accidents happen, there can be a variety of reasons, from negligence when operating a vehicle or equipment, negligent truck maintenance, a lack of oversight in ensuring safety, a collision, falling objects and more.

With mining, the owner of the company is frequently a major corporate entity with a significant amount of legal "firepower" and attempts at plausible deniability behind it. They are also using equipment from major manufacturers who will do whatever they can to shield themselves from blame for a defect they might have been responsible for. People can be electrocuted, fall from a great height, be injured due to the aforementioned equipment issues and more. Gathering evidence as to how and why the accident happened is the foundation to a successful personal injury case.

Distracted driver statistics in fatal crashes believed to be off

When there is a car accident in Montana, the causes can be numerous. One of the most prominent causes is distracted drivers. Statistics are recorded and reports are issues as to these crashes. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has released its study on recent fatalities on the road and the causes show interesting results.

For decades, road fatalities had declined relatively steadily. However, in 2015 and 2016, there was an increase of 14.4 percent. In 2016, there were more than 100 deaths per day. There have not been that many in 10 years. The causes of these deaths are causing confusion to regulatory agencies. There has not been a significant increase in the amount of driving people are doing - the total miles rose by only 2.2 percent - and that is leading to confusion as to the other factors contributing to the increase.

Alleged drunk driver runs red light, causes crash

When a drunk driver takes to the road in Montana, there are numerous dangers to drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists and anyone else in his or her path. Because people who are under the influence will be subject to a lack of judgment, reflexes and even the ability to adhere to the rules of the road, there is a major chance that these drunk drivers can have an accident, causing injuries and death. When there is any kind of auto accident, those involved must be aware of the chance that it was because of a driver under the influence and understand that this can be an important factor in seeking compensation in a lawsuit.

A man who is believed to have been drunk went through a red light and T-boned another vehicle recently. The driver then continued driving the wrong way on the road. The accident happened at shortly after 11 p.m. The driver, a 24-year-old from Arizona, was in a pickup truck and ran the light. He hit a vehicle being driven by a 20-year-old female. A sheriff was near the site of the crash and the collision was caught on the dashboard camera in his cruiser. He tried to stop the pickup, but the driver kept going. The woman was taken to the hospital. The driver faces multiple charges after this incident.

New technologies increase the chance of being a distracted driver

Encountering a distracted driver is a danger in Montana and throughout the nation. In general, distracted driving is believed to be linked to smartphones, texting and driving and other activities on electronic devices. However, research from AAA says that "infotainment" technology installed in newer vehicles is serving to distract drivers. These new items lead to drivers taking their eyes off the road similarly to when they are checking a smartphone and it can lead to a car accident.

The study examined these systems for the past four years. Infotainment is an option that more carmakers are offering and it lets drivers send texts and emails and use social media. These are growing more complex for drivers to operate and drive at the same time, as drivers will sometimes need to physically touch the system to operate it. The car industry states that the new systems are designed for increased safety as they are specifically intended to be used as the driver is operating the vehicle.

Used car dealer selling vehicles with unrepaired auto defects

Montana car buyers and car buyers throughout the U.S. are undoubtedly aware of the airbag defects that were deemed to have been responsible for numerous injuries and fatalities. The issues led to the airbag manufacturer Takata's bankruptcy and a seemingly endless stream of auto recalls to fix the problem. What many might not know about is that research has indicated that a large used car seller with a prominent advertising campaign was found to be selling vehicles that had unrepaired safety recalls. Some were due to the inflators in the Takata airbags.

Eight locations of CarMax Inc. showed that one of four vehicles that were reviewed fell into this category of not having the necessary repairs based on the recalls. 461 had one outstanding safety recall. 41 had recalls where there could not be repaired. Overall, the researchers looked at approximately 1,700 vehicles in three states. 45 vehicles had inflators made by Takata and these had not been fixed.

Defective auto part in Ram trucks sparks recall

For many in Montana, a pickup truck is a necessity of daily living. They use these vehicles for work and for recreation and expect it to work hard and be of top quality for all the paces it is put through. However, as recent history has shown, there are times when auto manufacturers make mistakes when putting the vehicle together. When there are auto defects, people might not be aware of them before it is too late. If there was an accident with injuries or consumer death and an auto recall was made, it is imperative to know whether the pieces fit and a lawsuit can be filed.

Nearly half-a-million Ram trucks all over the world have been recalled by Fiat Chrysler. There is a problem with its water pump that might lead to a fire. At the time of the recall, the company stated that it was not aware of anyone injured or killed. Vehicles from the model years 2013 to 2017 were subject to the recall. The Ram 2500 and 3500 pickup trucks and the 4500 and 5500 chassis cabs are part of the recall. Trucks that have 6.7-liter engines are the only ones that have been recalled because of this issue. The pump might overheat if certain conditions are met and lead to a fire in the vehicle's compartment.

Study shows wide ranging beliefs about texting and driving

It is not unusual to see drivers in Montana and across the U.S. looking down while they are behind the wheel. Obviously, they are frequently looking at their smartphones or some other device under the belief that they can multitask and do so safely. Texting and driving is just part of being a distracted driver and it is inherently dangerous. Studies are often done to try and explain this behavior. One study from Progressive Insurance came up with interesting results as to the mentality of people who text and drive. This can be beneficial after there has been an auto accident and the accident investigation shows that it happened because of a distracted driver.

The study states that approximately one-third of drivers think they can text and drive at the same time. This is despite their admission that distracted driving is the major cause of car crashes, and 90 percent think it should be outlawed. The age differences between drivers who express their positions regarding this matter is stark. Sixty percent of those who are 18 to 34 say that they believe they can text and drive safely. Less than 6 percent of those 55 and older say the same.

Fatal car crash claims life of pedestrian

Montana pedestrians must always be vigilant of potential dangers on the road. This is especially true in the early morning hours when it can be difficult to see. At this time of day, there is a chance that drivers may be drowsy or under the influence, and distraction can be a possible risk. When there is a crash between a car and a pedestrian, the lack of protection that pedestrians have can easily lead to the crash turning into a fatal accident. Those who have suffered the loss of a loved one in this type of accident should know what steps to take after it has happened.

A fatal car crash claimed the life of a pedestrian in Missoula County. The accident happened around 4:40 a.m. when a 39-year-old man was hit as he tried to cross the street. The law enforcement investigation states that the deceased man and another man were crossing at the intersection when the accident occurred. The man who was hit was declared dead at the accident scene. The driver of the vehicle remained at the scene and was cooperative. The investigation is ongoing.

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