Earlier this year, the Virginia Supreme Court heard a case involving a man who was seriously injured after the Hyundai he was driving left the roadway, slammed into several snow banks, and then struck a large tree. Although the car was equipped with a side airbag, the airbag did not deploy during the accident.
The family of the accident victim brought a suit against Hyundai, alleging that there was a breach in the “implied warranty of merchantability,” essentially claiming that the Hyundai “was defective, unreasonably dangerous, was not fit for the ordinary purpose for which it was intended, and did not pass without objection in the industry in which it was sold.” The essences of their claim was that, had the side airbag deployed, as it should have, the injuries sustained by their loved one would have been greatly reduced.
To support their theory, the plaintiffs called an expert at trial to testify that, had the airbag been properly designed, it would have gone off and that would have decreased any injury sustained as a result of the accident. His main argument was that it was not located in the right part of the vehicle.