The year 2015 was a huge year for recalls in the automotive industry. Over 51 million vehicles throughout the United States, including in West Virginia, were affected by more than 860 separate recalls stemming from auto defects. This figure is an all-time high, and this is the second consecutive year that the figure has been so high.
Back in 2014, vehicle manufacturers recalled more than 50 million automobiles across almost 780 separate recalls. Meanwhile, the entire industry nationwide recalled just 20 million cars in a year’s time from the years of 2005 to 2013. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration said part of the reason for the spike in recalls is that officials are more vigilant about looking for any auto defects and then quickly addressing them.
This means that auto defects might not have necessarily increased during the past two years. It simply means that the administration has improved in its ability to find them. Unfortunately, deaths on roadways increased in 2015 after hitting a low of a little over 32,600 back in 2014.
When defective vehicles cause people in West Virginia to become seriously injured or even to lose their lives, this is grounds for civil lawsuits. A person who is hurt due to auto defects has the right to file a personal injury claim against the manufacturer of the car/defective car part, pursuing the reimbursement of monetary damages. Meanwhile, the loved ones of those who have died as a result of vehicle defects may elect to file wrongful death claims. Only if liability can be established according to the strict standards of the court will claims for financial damages be decided.
Source: automobile-recalls.net, “Record Breaking Automotive Recalls in 2015 Motivates Better Safety Regulation For the Future”, Feb. 11, 2016