A car versus guardrail crash over the weekend resulted in injury after the guardrail impaled the vehicle. The accident happened when the guardrail separated and then impaled the car between the front seats before exiting the rear of the vehicle. After impalement, the guardrail extended approximately 20 feet past the vehicle. The passenger’s injuries required transfer to a local hospital by local Fire and Rescue.
Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys understand that accidents involving a guardrail crash are often ranked as some of the most injurious. This article will explore accidents caused by guardrails and how defective guardrails can increase the risk of serious injury or death.
Accidents Involving Defective Guardrails
Poorly designed or inadequately maintained guardrails are frequently the cause of injury and death during motor vehicle accidents. While guardrails are intended to protect car occupants from injury, they can actually be the reason that a person suffers a severe injury or death. Design flaws, defective installation and improper maintenance can result in equipment failure.
Defective Guardrail Design Flaws
Design flaws in the guardrail are a leading reason for vehicle impalements. In a guardrail crash, the guardrail should “telescope” upon impact to slow the vehicle and absorb some of the impact. The guardrail design to allow this mechanism of action is a critical safety feature. Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys will call the design of the guardrail into question when an accident results in impalement by a guardrail.
Guardrail Installation Errors
Serious car, motorcycle, and truck accidents can also be due to guardrail installation errors. One survey from the Federal Highway administration determined that guardrail installation crews cited difficulty installing certain types of guardrail end-terminals due to unclear instructions regarding placement and installation.
For example, a fatal guardrail crash may occur because a guardrail was not installed at the proper height. Guardrails that are installed too low may not stop a vehicle from going over the top of it. Alternatively, guardrails that are installed too high may create too much space under the guardrail, and a motorcycle rider may slide underneath. Incorrect installation is a serious problem that should be explored after these types of accidents.
Missing Guardrail Accidents
Sometimes local or state departments fail to install guardrails at much needed locations to achieve cost savings. Roads that have a high risk for rollover accidents, have steep declines off the side of the road, or have a high risk of head on collisions are roads that should be considered for guardrail installation. When local government fails to take action, they can be held accountable for a serious accident that occurred from a missing guardrail.
Claims against government entities often have a shorter statute of limitations than other personal injury claims. Therefore, its important to consult Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys regarding your rights as soon as possible.
While no product can be guaranteed to be 100% safe, designers, manufacturers, and installers have a responsibility to adhere to certain safety standards. Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys can help families who believe that their loved one sustained serious injury from a guardrail crash caused by a guardrail that was improperly designed or installed. Our Philadelphia personal injury attorneys can help determine whether the guardrail failed to perform as it was intended.
Defective Guardrail End Treatments
Guardrails are metal railings that border roads to prevent cars from accessing to a more dangerous area, such as locations with utility poles, steep cliffs, waterways, or oncoming traffic. Guardrails are intended to keep vehicles on the roadway and way from these dangerous objects and areas.
Guardrail ends, have been noted to harbor dangers for impaling vehicles during a head-on collision. As a result, guardrail end treatments were developed to telescope off to the side when a vehicle hits a guardrail at an endpoint. Defective guardrail end treatments have been cited in lawsuits as the cause of numerous deaths throughout the country.
Pennsylvania and New Jersey have guardrails are from a variety of manufacturers. Some of these guardrails have been associated with recalls and injuries.
The X-Lite Guardrail
The X-Lite Lindsey guardrail has been named in multiple wrongful death lawsuits across the country. These lawsuits claim that the guardrail can impale cars on impact and result in driver and passenger fatalities. Several states have taken steps to remove these guardrails or stop using them in new installations. The X-Lite is no longer manufactured but continue to be installed on many highways throughout the United States. Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation announced they would stop new installation of these guardrails in February 2018.
The ET-Plus Guardrail
The ET-Plus Trinity guardrail has been widely used on U.S. roadways. However, the guardrail was designed without proper testing and government testing. The re-designed guardrail has been blamed for causing a higher risk for injuries and fatalities.
Injuries from Faulty or Improperly Installed Guardrails
A guardrail crash can leave the victim with serious or fatal injuries that include:
- Spinal Injuries
- Internal Organ Injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
The companies who manufacture and distribute the X-Lite and ET-Plus guardrails have been hit by multiple lawsuits regarding the design flaws in their products. If you or a loved one was severely injured in a guardrail crash, contact Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys for representation. The Wieand Law Firm is a personal injury law firm that represents victims in catastrophic car accidents that deserve compensation for their injuries.
The experienced attorneys at the Wieand Law Firm regularly handle complex cases dealing with product liability, auto accidents and trucking cases. Our lawyers are investigating potential X-Lite and Trinity ET-Plus lawsuits. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury from one of these guardrails, you may be eligible to recover damages for your injuries through a guardrail lawsuit.
Contact the Wieand Law Firm Today
Call the Wieand Law Firm to schedule your free case review and evaluation. We understand that catastrophic car accidents are devastating and overwhelming. Speak directly with a knowledgeable and compassionate Pennsylvania defective guardrail attorneys to understand your legal options during this difficult time.
Our lawyers do not charge an hourly fee for personal injury cases. Instead, we use a contingency fee contract in which we only earn a fee if we win money for your case. This means that you can focus on recovery without the stress of legal fees. Call 215-666-7777 or send a message via the online form to speak with an attorney.