Cars now come equipped with antilock braking systems (ABS), which are a safety mechanism intended to help you navigate the road more safely, and that’s great. When these highly intricate safety systems fail, however, they can lead to serious car accidents that cause serious damage. It’s a good idea to acquaint yourself with your car’s ABS and other safety systems so that you’re well prepared to employ them when necessary and so that you’ll recognize when they malfunction.
Your Car’s Antilock Braking System
Antilock braking systems are intended to allow you to steer your vehicle more safely in emergencies—such as when your car begins to slide on wet or icy roads—by aiding in the car’s restoration of traction to its tires. This safety mechanism helps to prevent your car’s tires from locking up and, thus, has the potential to help you steer more safely through dangerous road conditions.
Antilock braking systems are often referred to as brakes that help you steer, and as the driver, all you need do to engage them is to apply and maintain firm pressure to your brake pedal—while you safely steer your car through the danger. It’s important to note that, when your ABS is engaged, it’s normal for your brake pedal to push back or shudder. Unfortunately, drivers who are unaware of this pushback, often let up on the brake just when they should continue slowing down, which could lead to or exacerbate car accidents.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by the failure of a vehicle’s ABS, you’re likely to be traumatized by the incident. At The Levin Firm in Philadelphia, our experienced car accident attorneys have the skill, knowledge, and determination to fight for your just compensation, and we’re here to help.
How Abs Systems Function
Antilock braking systems have evolved over the years to incorporate a variety of safety functions within the ABS. These primarily include the electronic control of your car’s front-to-rear bias, traction control, electronic stability control, and emergency brake assist. The electronic stability control system (ESC) provides additional sensors that allow it to detect whether the direction your car is moving in coincides with the direction intended by your steering wheel, and if it doesn’t, the ESC will apply the brakes to the necessary wheel or wheels to get your vehicle traveling in the intended direction.
Antilock Braking System Failures
These highly technological advancements in braking systems have allowed for dramatically improved braking and overall safety in the vehicles we drive. When something goes wrong or malfunctions in these highly advanced systems, however, the results can be deadly. As ABS become ever-more technologically advanced, complex, and integrated, the number of ways they can fail or malfunction increases:
- Brake systems that have design or manufacturing flaws (as evidenced by recent car recalls for faulty antilock braking systems) can be exceedingly dangerous, but before the recall goes out, the drivers of these vehicles are likely to have no idea of the danger that’s lurking.
- As ABS become more highly calibrated, more integrated, and more precise, they also become more difficult to repair and it becomes more difficult to find qualified repair people.
- Substandard workmanship on the braking system’s computer (which can be caused by unqualified repair people) can lead the brakes to engage when they shouldn’t or to not engage at all.
Though the antilock braking systems in the cars that travel our great state’s highways and byways help save lives, they can also lead to serious accidents when they malfunction, which is often a byproduct of their increased technological sophistication and highly-tuned calibration.
Your Car’s Integrated Safety Systems
Car manufacturers are increasingly adopting more integrated safety systems, which means that litigation related to defective automotive parts, such as faulty antilock brakes, is becoming more and more complex. It’s important to note, however, that while car manufacturers have large banks of attorneys to represent them and attempt to shut down these important safety claims, your rights matter; an experienced car accident attorney will aggressively fight for your rights and for your rightful compensation.
Your Car’s Crashworthiness
As vehicle’s safety systems have become more complex and more closely intertwined, defective parts claims have begun to focus on the car in question’s crashworthiness. Your car’s crashworthiness doesn’t refer to any one specific safety system but instead relates to how all your vehicle’s safety mechanisms work in tandem to protect the vehicle’s occupants. For example, if your antilock braking system malfunctions during an accident but your other safety features perform appropriately, your ABS may be considered the weak link that diminished your vehicle’s crashworthiness in your crashworthiness case.
Crashworthiness cases differ from conventional car accident cases in important ways. A typical car accident claim primarily attends to what caused the accident and to who is responsible for the accident. Crashworthiness cases, on the other hand, focus on exactly how the failure of a vehicle’s integrated safety systems contributed to the driver’s (and/or the occupants’) incurred injuries.
It’s established that claims involving safety-system failures, such as ABS failures, are complicated. If an ABS failure (or any other safety-system failure), has caused you or your loved one to be injured, however, an experienced car accident lawyer can help you effectively and efficiently navigate the legal process and bring your claim to its most just conclusion. Your rights are too important to leave in the hands of a car manufacturer’s team of lawyers.
If You’ve Been Injured in a Car Accident Caused by a Faulty Safety System, Consult With an Experienced Philadelphia Car Accident Attorney Today
If you or someone you care about has been injured in a car accident that was caused by a faulty safety system, such as a faulty ABS, you need experienced legal counsel. Your rights and your claim matter, and the committed car accident lawyers at The Levin Firm in Philadelphia are here to help protect both. Our experienced legal team understands how difficult this is for you, and we’re determined to aggressively advocate for your claim’s best possible resolution. Please contact or call us at 215-825-5183 today.