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When you get behind the wheel of your car, you probably don’t pay a whole lot of attention to your brakes—your car always comes to a complete stop at stoplights, so what is there to worry about? Our vehicles now come equipped with antilock braking systems (ABS) that represent an improved safety feature, which helps us maneuver more safely over our nation’s highways and byways. Antilock brakes help save lives, but when these highly complex braking systems malfunction, they can also cause serious accidents that lead to severe injuries. To help ensure that your car’s brakes work when you really need them, give some thought to your antilock braking system.
Antilock Braking Systems
Your car’s antilock brakes help you steer more effectively in driving emergencies, such as when your tires begin sliding on a slippery road. The antilock brakes work to restore your tires’ traction with the road and to prevent them from locking up, and they, thus, can help you steer through dangerous conditions more safely.
Due to their dual function, ABS are sometimes referred to as brakes that help you steer. Your job as the driver is simply to engage the brakes when you need them by applying and sustaining firm pressure on your brake pedal—while you steer safely out of harm’s way. It’s important to be aware that it’s normal for your ABS, when engaged, to push the brake pedal back at you and/or to shudder. Sometimes a driver who is unfamiliar with these brakes or who is unaware of this pushback will take the foot off the brake pedal in a moment of panic—just when it’s most important to continue safely slowing down by applying even pressure. This startled response can lead to or exacerbate a dangerous car accident.
If a faulty antilock braking system injured you, you know how traumatizing that is. The legal team at Abels & Annes in Chicago is here to help protect your rights and to fight for your rightful compensation.
Antilock braking systems have come a long way, and they incorporate several safety mechanisms within their systems. Primarily, these include electronic control of the front-to-rear bias, emergency brake assist, traction control, and electronic stability control (ESC). ESC implements added sensors that allow it to detect whether your car is moving in the direction that your steering wheel intends it to, and if this isn’t the case, it selectively applies the brakes to those individual wheels that will put your car back on the intended path.
Faulty Antilock Braking Systems and Failures
Technological advancements in the cars we drive, such as ABS, have dramatically improved the safety of the cars on our roads. Failure of these highly calibrated safety mechanisms, however, can lead to deadly accidents. As ABS evolve into ever more advanced, integrated, and complex systems, the methods by which they can fail multiply:
- ABS flawed by poor design or the manufacturing process—as we’ve seen with recent recalls—can lead to extremely dangerous accidents. Before a recall takes effect, however, the unwitting drivers of these vehicles aren’t aware of the danger their brakes may harbor.
- As antilock braking systems become ever-more technologically advanced, they also become harder to repair and maintain. This translates into difficulty finding qualified repair people to work on them. When poorly qualified repair people work on these braking systems, the substandard workmanship can lead to dangerous ABS malfunctions.
- Advancements in car safety mechanisms save lives, but when they’re faulty, when they malfunction, or when they’re in disrepair—which are sometimes byproducts of their technological sophistication—they can cause serious accidents and injuries.
Integrated Safety Systems
The safety systems in the cars we drive are becoming and more integrated, which means that when something goes wrong, it’s more difficult to get to the root of the problem. Litigation related to safety-system failures has also naturally become much more complex. Although giant car manufacturers employ teams of attorneys to attempt to shut down any claims brought against them, claims related to the safety of the vehicles that we drive are important for helping to keep our roads safer for everyone. Your rights matter, and a Chicago car accident attorney will help guide your brake failure claim to just resolution.
As cars’ safety systems continue to coalesce, defective parts claims continue to focus more closely on the crashworthiness of the car involved. As such, your vehicle’s crashworthiness doesn’t attest to any specific safety mechanism but instead refers to the ability of all your car’s safety systems to work together to improve its safety. For instance, if you’re in an accident in which your ABS fail but all your other safety systems function correctly, your antilock braking system may prove the sticking point that reduced your car’s crashworthiness in your crashworthiness claim.
A crashworthiness claim is different from a traditional car-accident claim because—instead of attending primarily to what and who caused the accident—it focuses on how the failure of the vehicle’s integrated safety systems contributed to the accident. Abels & Annes can help you secure your rights and your claim even in these complicated cases.
If a Brake Failure Accident Injured You, Consult a Chicago Car Accident Lawyer Today
Car accidents are frightening, and brake failure accidents are often terrifying. If you or someone you care about was injured in a brake failure accident, you know how difficult that is. After all, our car’s brakes are a safety mechanism that’s meant to protect us from harm—not to cause it. The legal team at the law firm of Abels & Annes is committed to helping to guide your claim toward its best possible outcome. We’re here to help, and we care—so please contact our office or call our office at (312) 924-7575 for a free initial consultation today.