People in Florida and elsewhere can hire personal injury lawyers to file car accident lawsuits against automakers for safety defects thanks to a car crash survivor from Utah who had an attorney who wouldn’t give up.
The Salt Lake Tribune recently reported on the case of 49-year old Delbert Williamson, whose wife was killed in a 2002 head-on collision. Williamson and his daughter were severely injured in the crash.
The family was traveling in a 1993 Mazda MPV minivan. Williamson was driving. His daughter was sitting behind him, wearing a three-point seatbelt, the kind that goes across your lap and shoulder. Williamson’s wife was sitting next to their daughter. Mazda designed the minivan so that the seat she was sitting in, near the passenger side door, had only a lap belt.
In many ways, the accident provided a textbook example of why three-point restraints were developed. A lot of safety technology in car accidents involves reducing injuries by diffusing the energy of a collision. With a single belt that is fastened across a passenger’s waist, all of the force of the impact is concentrated. A lap seat belt combined with a shoulder belt spreads the impact energy of a car crash. Further, engineers anchored the three points of the shoulder and lap belt toward the floor of the vehicle. This channels the energy, much the way grounding electricity sends a shock into the ground instead of through a person.
According to his lawyers, Williamson was driving northbound on the highway when he saw a motorhome coming in the southbound lane. Then a Jeep appeared to come out from behind the motorhome into Williamson’s lane as if to pass. It turns out that motorhome was towing the Jeep, but the Jeep became detached. No one was driving. It smashed head-on into Williamson’s minivan. Because his daughter was wearing a three-point restraint, she survived. But because his wife was wearing only a lap belt, all of the impact of the crash concentrated on her midsection. She sustained massive internal injuries and died.
Car Accident Lawyers Wouldn’t Give Up
Williamson’s lawyers sued Mazda for wrongful death and negligence. He charged that his wife’s seat belt constituted a design defect. Various courts dismissed his complaints, but he had very persistent personal injury lawyers. Williamson made history in car accident lawsuits. The case ultimately went to the Supreme Court, where justices ruled in his favor.
If car or truck safety defects – or other carelessness or negligence – injures you or someone you love, you need the experts in Florida car accident lawsuits. Contact the Orlando car accident attorneys at Martinez Manglardi. Call 407-846-2240 for a free consultation.