160 S. Municipal Dr. Suite 100, Sugar Grove, IL 60554

Department of Transportation Orders Recall of Defective Takata Airbags

Posted on in Illinois personal injury attorney

product liability, personal injury, Illinois Personal Injury AttorneyThe United States Department of Transportation has ordered the recall of close to 34 million vehicles as a result of faulty airbags manufactured by the Japanese company Takata. Some driver and passenger side air bag inflators are filled with a type of propellant that can cause the airbag to rupture. The defective airbags have resulted in at least six deaths worldwide and more than 100 injuries, which will likely lead to a number of personal injury lawsuits against the manufacturer based on products liability.

Illinois Product Liability Claims

Product liability is a theory of law that holds either the manufacturer, seller, or both, liable for injury caused by a defect in their product – from the maker of a piston that was purchased and installed by the car manufacturer to the manufacturer who placed the faulty piston in the vehicle.

There are two primary types of product defects that can lead to a product liability case. In a design defect, the component that caused the plaintiff’s injury was inherently defective, such as an iron that heats to too high of a temperature or a washing machine that catches fire. Under a manufacturing defect, the product’s components aren’t themselves defective; rather, the product becomes defective due to the way it is assembled, either because it was put together incorrectly or had unintended consequences. Examples would include a bicycle sold without all of its gears or a car seat sold with a crack in its base.

Product liability claims can be brought under either the theory of negligence or strict liability.


Under a negligence claim, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed him a duty of care that was breached and, as a result of that breach, the plaintiff was injured and incurred damages that can be compensated.

Strict liability

Under the principle of strict liability, there is no need to prove that the defendant owed plaintiff a duty of care. The plaintiff will recover if he is able to prove that:

  • He or she suffered an injury;
  • The injury was the result of a condition of the product manufactured or sold by the defendant;
  • The condition was unreasonably dangerous, and;
  • The condition existed when the product left the manufacturer’s control.

The fact that a product caused injury isn’t alone enough to hold the manufacturer liable for damages. There must be some evidence that the manufacturer or maker of a component part knew, or should have known, that the product was defective or had the potential to cause injury. This requires a thorough examination of the manufacturer’s records and expert reviews of the product to corroborate the defects and explain the availability of safer alternatives. Product liability cases are extremely complex and require the assistance of an attorney who understands the intricacies of such cases.

Sugar Grove Personal Injury Attorneys

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident due to a product defect, contact an experienced personal injury attorney immediately. Evidence must be gathered quickly and, if your injury involved a recalled vehicle, it must be examined by an automotive expert to determine if the defect was the cause of the accident and subsequent injury. The Sugar Grove personal injury attorneys at Law Office of James F. White, P.C., have more than 40 years’ combined experience handling personal injury cases, from medical malpractice to motor vehicle accidents, and in winning compensation for our clients. Let us put that experience to work for you. Call us today at (630) 466-1600, or complete our online form, to schedule a free initial consultation.


160 S. Municipal Dr. Suite 100, Sugar Grove, IL 60554

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