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If bad brakes cause a deadly crash, can I sue the manufacturer?

There are a lot of parts that have to come together correctly for a vehicle to operate correctly. Of course, the most important part is the human one that's behind the wheel.

Human error is the cause of a many of the deadly accidents we see on the roads around League City and Galveston. And when negligence can clearly be shown, victims who suffer injury or those who suffer the loss of a loved one's life have a right to seek compensation.

But what happens when human error is not the root cause of a fatal crash? What if something goes wrong with the vehicle itself and it results in someone being killed? Then it could well be a matter of product liability. An attorney should be consulted to determine what options for recovery might exist.

This may be something that is on the minds of families of victims of a single vehicle crash in southeast Houston. Officials say it happened July 6, at about 10:20 at night. Four people were traveling together in a car along Airport Boulevard when the driver lost control. The car veered off the road and slammed into a tree. One person died and at least two others were hurt. Officials said their injuries were not life threatening.

At the time this is written, the word is that police are investigating exactly what happened. But they say that the female driver of the car told them that her brakes failed. She says she tried to apply the emergency brakes, something many drivers might not have even thought to do, but it didn't do any good. Police also say that there are no indications that alcohol or drugs impaired the driver.

If it turns out that the brakes did indeed fail then it would seem possible that claims for recovery could be made within the context of a products liability suit. Alternatively, if the brakes had recently been worked on, accountability might rest with the mechanic who did that job.

Source: Houston Chronicle, "Apparent brake problems results in fatal crash," Dale Lezon, July 7, 2015

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