Buying a used car is a risk people take because previously owned cars are often more affordable than new cars. However, along with their higher prices, new cars carry more assurance that the vehicle is in top condition and safe to operate. If a customer has concerns about the safety of a used car, he or she may simply have to trust the word of the dealer. One woman in Texas feels her family's trust was misplaced, and she is suing a used car dealer for wrongful death.
When a man and his wife purchased a used car from a dealership, they were apparently unaware that problems had been reported with the model's airbag system. The couple did receive paperwork saying that the driver's seat, which contains airbag sensors, had been replaced by the dealership. However, on their way to a family reunion, the couple and their three young daughters were hit head-on by a car crossing the center line. The airbags on the driver's side of the vehicle did not deploy.
The man and his wife both died in the accident, and the couple's oldest daughter, who was not in the car, believes her father died because of the faulty airbag. When inspectors studied the car, they found that the airbag fuse had been removed. Additionally, despite the invoice saying otherwise, the front seat and its sensors were apparently never replaced.
A Texas car dealership is bound to disclose any issues they are aware of when selling a used car. The woman believes the dealership did not do this and is therefore responsible for the airbag failure. She is suing the dealership for the wrongful death of her father. After her younger sisters watched their parents die, she says she does not want other families to endure the same suffering.
Source: CBS DFW, "Lawsuit Says Dealerships Turned Off Airbags -- Parents Died In Accident", Ginger Allen, Sept. 19, 2016