BMW recalls cars for potential seat belt hazard

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Anyone in California who is considering purchasing a BMW i3 had better buckle up for news of the latest recall. In light of the many auto defect class action cases across the country, many involving companies that concealed the dangers from consumers, it may be refreshing to hear that BMW is recalling the i3 before its defect causes anyone injury. Refreshing or not, many recalls do not get word out to consumers in time and result in tragic accidents that lead to claims for legal recourse. 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted crash tests on the i3 and found that a small adult female has a slightly higher than acceptable chance of suffering injuries if she is not wearing a seatbelt in the front passenger seat. An unbuckled woman who is about 5 feet tall and weighs around 110 pounds may suffer a neck injury in a frontal collision. However, the chances are only marginally above federal limits.

BMW says its own tests found that the chances of injury were far below standards. However, after the NHTSA's report, BMW did further tests with inconclusive results. They decided the safest course of action was to recall the cars and work on a solution. Since seatbelts are required by law for front-seat passengers in California and 48 other states, some may think a recall is excessive, but BMW may be taking the opportunity to rebuild its reputation for safety.

Too often, car manufacturers try to conceal defects until hundreds of people suffer injuries or the loss of loved ones in mishaps related to the defects. While it may be intimidating to take on a major player in the automotive industry, there is power in numbers. After consulting an attorney, one may find it beneficial to join a class action lawsuit against the car company responsible for a dangerous defect.

Source: cnet.com, "BMW recalls every single i3 EV over unbelted crash concerns", Andrew Krok, Nov. 20, 2017

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