We live in a country of now, now, now. We want our instant coffee, our fast food, and our fast Internet. By the time you have waited in line for the new iPhone, your hair has turned grey and four new models have been released, and you were only waiting in line for two hours. This need for expediency and convenience is also present in the United States car industry, with each company gearing up year after year for what is essentially an automotive arms race. While your children will be quick to point out that technology has many benefits, it also makes for increasingly complex vehicle interfaces, and as a result cars are getting much more complicated to build. This translates to a much smaller margin for error in modern vehicle engineering and electronic components, and this is one of the main reasons automobile design defects injure thousands of people each year.
Earlier this week, Nissan Motor Company issued a recall on 188,302 sport-utility vehicles, a great deal of which being located in the United States, in order to fix malfunctioning brake control software that has the potential to increase the likelihood of an accident. According to the company, the software settings are not functioning properly on rough or uneven roads, leading to longer stopping distances than drivers might otherwise expect. In total, 151,695 vehicles are affected by the recall in the U.S., spanning the following models:
• Nissan Pathfinder (Model years 2013 and 2014)
• Infiniti JX35 SUVs (Model year 2013)
• Infiniti QX60 SUVs (Model year 2014)
Nissan reports that vehicles in Canada, China, Russia, and Mexico, among other countries will also be affected by the recall. The company has begun the notification process, and will be contacting all of the affected vehicle owners within the next 60 days. Dealers have been instructed to reprogram the antilock brake system at no cost. At present there have been no reports of accidents or injuries relating to the design defect. (Chicago Tribune)
Design defects happen, but it is the responsibility of an automotive company to look out for the safety of their customers, and take every measure they can to remedy the situation in a timely manner to protect consumers from serious injury. In this case, Nissan acted quickly and responsibly to ensure that their mistake didn’t injure any of their customers and this may have prevented dozens, or even hundreds of accidents.
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident as the result of a design defect, our lawyers may be able to help you get the compensation you deserve. If you are in need of legal counsel, visit our website, or call our lawyers anytime for a free consultation.