Court Orders Hyundai to Pay $8 Million in Seatback Defect Case

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The Washington State Supreme Court has recently ordered Orange County-based Hyundai Motor Co. to pay $8 million in an auto product liability case involving a man who was rendered paraplegic in a car accident. The victim, Jesse Magana, sued the auto maker in 2000 in connection with a 1997 car accident when the Hyundai Accent in which he was a passenger, went off a roadway and hit a tree. Magana was ejected from the rear window and he claimed that his injuries were caused partly by seatback defects. The Hyundai Accent’s seatback collapsed during the crash, the lawsuit alleged.
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Toyota Tundra Trucks Recalled for Corrosion, Brake Defects

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Federal regulators have issued a auto product defect recall for 110,000 Toyota Tundras due to excessive erosion of the vehicle frame which can cause the spare tire mounted underneath the vehicle to fall out posing a roadway hazard for other motorists. According to a CNN news report, the recall was issued in 20 states and the District of Columbia. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has stated in its safety alert that road salts can lead to the corrosion in these pickup trucks. The corrosion can also cause serious brake defects by damaging the rear brake lines and causing the brake system to fail, federal officials say.
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Pfizer Faces $103 Million in Punitive Damages over Defective Drug

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Drug manufacturer, Pfizer, has been hit with $103 million in two punitive damage awards in pharmaceutical liability cases involving Prempro, a hormone replacement drug made by Wyeth, which was recently acquired by Pfizer. According to a news report in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the drug was linked to breast cancer in the victims. The total damages include $28 million awarded to Donna Kendall, an Illinois woman. In another case, a judge this week unsealed a verdict reached earlier this year where a jury awarded $75 million in punitive damages to another Illinois resident, Connie Barton, who was afflicted with breast cancer as a result of taking Prempro, which was used to treat menopause symptoms including hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings.
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Volvo Recalls Vehicles for Seatbelt Defects

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Volvo will issue a vehicle defect recall for about 8,438 of its 2010 XC60 SUVs because of a problem that could cause the seatbelt to become detached from the seat frame during a side impact crash. According to a report in Left Lane News, the problem was discovered during crash testing. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which released a report on the problem, stated that the driver’s seat side cover panel or seat control panel in certain driver-side collisions may cause the seatbelt to detach.
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2.1 Million Defective Cribs Recalled

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Federal officials have issued a defective product recall for more than 2.1 million drop-side cribs made by Stork Craft Manufacturing, in the single biggest crib recall in the nation’s history. According to an MSNBC news report, this product recall involves 1.2 million cribs in the United States and about 1 million in Canada where the company is based. Apparently, these cribs have a serious product defect where the drop-side plastic hardware can break or deform causing the drop-side to detach. This basically creates a space between the drop side and the crib mattress where infants can become entrapped and suffocate. Such unforeseen drop-side detachment can also cause dangerous fall injuries to young children.
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Los Angeles Car Accident Caused by Tire Blowout

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The driver of a pickup truck was killed in a fiery Los Angeles car accident after his vehicle blew a tire and then crashed into a concrete wall on the 210 Freeway. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Times, the accident occurred the afternoon of November 22, 2009 on the westbound lanes of the freeway in La Canada Flintridge. California Highway Patrol officials said the impact from the collision sent debris flying into the eastbound lanes of the highway striking two vehicles and a motorcyclist, who was transported to an area hospital with moderate injuries.
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Defective Pacifiers Recalled for Choking Hazard

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Grand World Inc., a New York-based importer, has issued a defective product recall for about 641,000 pacifiers that fail to meet federal safety standards and could pose a choking hazard to infants. According to a consumer safety alert issued by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the recall involves the Bobby Chupete brand pacifiers, which have a ring-shaped handle and a heart-shaped mouth guard with two ventilation holes. The nipple is made of latex. Federal officials say the mouth guard on these pacifiers, which were manufactured in China, is too small, posing a choking hazard to young children who use them.
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Defective Gas Grills Recalled for Fire Hazard

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L. G. Sourcing has issued a defective product recall for more than 600,000 of its Perfect Flame SLG Series gas grills sold at Lowe’s Stores. According to a news report in Consumeraffairs.com, the burners on these grills can deteriorate causing irregular flames. The lids of some models can ignite, posing serious burn injuries to consumers. So far, the company has received nearly 40 reports of fires from these defective burners and close to 23 reports of the lids igniting. The company stated that one eye injury related to this product defect required surgery. In 21 other incidents, consumers sustained burn injuries to their hands, arms or face.
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California Rollover Car Accident Seriously Injures Toddler

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A 4-year-old girl has been seriously injured in a car accident after the SUV she was a passenger in, crashed and rolled over on Highway 101 in Monterey County, the Monterey Herald reports. According to the news report, the girl was riding in the right rear seat of a Dodge Durango SUV that was being driven by her mother, 23-year-old Luz Acosta. The SUV was traveling on the Highway 101 near Somavia Road the morning of November 19, 2009 when the woman lost control of the SUV. The Dodge crossed the center divider and two southbound lanes, rolled over and came to rest on the west side of the roadway. The child was ejected from the vehicle and was seriously injured. The extent of the mother’s injuries is not known.
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How Do You Know If You Need A Car Accident Lawyer?

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California Personal injury claims can be very complex. Many accident victims need professional attorneys to help with the settlement process. This is not always the case, however. How do you know if you need an attorney?

People who are involved in a California car accident can handle their own claims. It is similar to handling your own injury. If you injury is a scratch on your arm you can put some antiseptic on it and a Band-Aid. If you have a broken arm that needs to be set, I don’t think you want to handle it yourself. This is the same with auto accidents. The more serious the accident, the more you are going to need professional help.

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