Could a Kia Auto Defect Lead to Catastrophic Injuries?entry-title

Photo of Firefighters fighting a blaze

The Center for Auto Safety collected around 250 reports of Hyundai and Kia vehicles spontaneously catching on fire. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reportedly received over 350 complaints about fires involving these vehicles. In these cases, there was no collision and the source of the fires is suspected to be a defect in certain engines shared by these auto brands. So why hasn’t Kia or Hyundai recalled the affected vehicles?

Why Won’t Hyundai/Kia Recall Defective Engines?

As more reports pile up, executives at Kia and Hyundai (which owns 33 percent of Kia) continue to drag their feet. Hyundai claims to welcome comprehensive reviews of the non-collision fires while Kia is promising to hire investigators to look into these “thermal incidents”. Executives from the companies have even refused an invitation from the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee to testify on the subject. This raises concerns that the companies are trying to avoid liability for these fires and the costs that fixing such defects could incur. Considering that an estimated 2.9 million vehicles could be affected, a Kia and Hyundai fire recall of this magnitude could be quite costly, and it could open the company up to be held responsible for the catastrophic injuries that have already occurred.

Burn Injuries and Recovery

In car fires such as these, burn injuries often occur. Depending on the severity of these injuries, it could take months or even years to recover. Some patients may never fully recover and could be forced to deal with physical and psychological pain for the rest of their lives. Multiple surgeries as well as complications such as infections, blood clotting and scarring could result.

At least six people have been reportedly injured due to these Hyundai/Kia non-collision fires. In the case of a teenager grocery shopping in a Kia Soul for his parents, the spontaneous fire proved fatal. Drivers are even reporting being flagged down by good Samaritans, so they can escape vehicles they didn’t even know were burning. That means everyone needs to be on alert when it comes to these car fires, and this is especially true here in California.

What Other Damages Could a Car Fire Cause?

In the past few years, our state has been plagued by wildfires. Though public utilities have gotten the blame for many of these blazes, not all of them were the result of negligently maintained powerlines. The Carr Fire was reportedly sparked by a car with a flat tire, and Fiat Chrysler was blamed for a 2013 fire that happened only a few counties away from Murrieta and Temecula. If one of these Hyundai or Kia vehicles ignite in our area, could thousands of people be affected?

How Can an Attorney Help After a Non-Collision Fire?

In the event of a spontaneous Hyundai or Kia fire, calling an attorney experienced in handling catastrophic injury cases is critical. Our attorney, Steven Gnau, is a trusted attorney who has helped injury victims throughout Temecula, Murrieta and beyond. Call (951) 370-1111 to schedule a free consultation about your injury today. For updates on the progress of a Kia or Hyundai fire recall, keep following our blog and Facebook.

How Are Schools Responsible for Keeping Their Students Safe?entry-title

Photo of a Swimming Pool Rail

While participating in a school swimming lesson, a 15-year-old student slipped beneath the water and drowned. No one in the class noticed at first. It wasn’t until after the class had been released that the boy was found. Could the school be responsible for this accident? What makes schools responsible for the injuries and deaths of children under their care? Today, we will take a look at the California laws meant to hold our state’s educational institutions responsible for student safety.

Are Schools Responsible for Student Safety?

When it comes to accidents that happen at government agencies such as schools, these institutions are protected from liability. This protection is often provided by sovereign immunity, but there are certain exceptions to this law. The California Tort Claims Act (CTCA) says that in cases of gross negligence and appropriate insurance coverage, schools can be held responsible for accidents. It even exposes schools to liability for failing to carry out a duty imposed by the law. This means that the circumstances of an accident play a big part in whether a school will be held responsible.

In the incident above, a teacher was supervising the swimming lesson from a diving board when the boy lost his life. Video surveillance revealed that the teacher may have been distracted by his cellphone when the boy became distressed. The teacher later neglected taking roll, and he missed the boy’s clothes still sitting beside the pool. If a court finds that these actions were negligent, then the school could be held liable for the boy’s passing.

How Do I Determine if a School’s Actions Were Negligent?

When it comes to the injury or death of any member of your family, consulting an attorney is a sound strategy. An attorney’s experience and knowledge of the law may help families determine if they have a claim against a school or another institution. Our attorney, Steve Gnau, offers free consultations to families who need help after an accident. Call today at (951) 370-1111 for the help your family deserves.