The Downside of California’s Lack of Vehicle Inspections
Vehicle safety inspections check essential components of a vehicle to ensure they are functioning properly. These components typically include the brakes, tires, taillights, headlights, wheel alignment, steering, and seatbelts. Although California requires emissions testing to check for pollutant emissions, it does not require vehicle safety inspections, with the exception of some commercial vehicles. When brakes, tires, or other essential equipment on a vehicle fails, it can lead to serious accidents.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Vehicle Safety Inspections?
It stands to reason that mandatory vehicle inspections promote public safety by reducing the number of accidents caused by unsafe vehicles. Emissions inspections help reduce smog levels. Vehicle inspections also provide fees for state income, as well as income for mechanics who perform repairs on the vehicles.
On the downside, required inspections cause inconvenience for vehicle owners. Costs may also be a burden, particularly for lower income families. In addition, inspection requirements do not correlate with lower automobile insurance rates.
Is There a Link Between Vehicle Safety Inspections and Accidents?
Mandatory safety inspections can help ensure all vehicles on the road meet minimum safety standards, particularly in components such as brakes, tires, steering, and suspension. They can identify and correct safety hazards before they cause harm. According to the Auto Care Association:
- South Carolina eliminated its safety inspection program in 1995. In the next 11 years, the state experienced a 29.04% increase in traffic fatalities.
- Mississippi did away with mandatory vehicle safety inspections in 2015 and saw an increase in traffic fatalities the following year from 607 to 677.
- Florida has experienced a 63.4% increase in total traffic crashes since eliminating its vehicle safety inspection program in 2000.
Researchers came to the following conclusions regarding vehicle safety inspections in Texas in a University of Texas study:
- Frequency of fatalities and injuries is higher for crashes involving vehicles with defects.
- Crashes involving vehicles with defects are twice as likely to result in a fatality than crashes in vehicles without defects.
- Slick or defective tires are the most prevalent defect related to fatal crashes.
- The percentage of crashes involving defective vehicles, and the severity of those crashes, increases with higher speed limits.
How Can Defective Vehicle Components Cause Accidents?
Mechanical failure on a vehicle can result from failure to perform maintenance and repairs or from manufacturing defects. Examples of vehicle components that can cause accidents and injuries include:
- Brakes that fail to stop the vehicle
- Steering systems that fail and cause loss of control of the vehicle
- Electrical system issues that cause loss of lights or fires
- Accelerators that stick or break
- Airbags that deploy when they should not
- Tires that blow out, fall apart, or have insufficient tread
How Can a Lawyer Help After a Crash Caused by an Unsafe Vehicle?
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle collision caused by an unsafe vehicle, you may have a claim for compensation against the at-fault driver. Damages you may be entitled to claim will depend on the nature and extent of your injuries and the circumstances of your case. Common damages in car accident claims include past and future medical expenses, lost wages or earnings, loss of future earning potential, and pain and suffering.
Our Glendale car accident attorney at Aratta Law Firm can investigate the details of the collision to determine fault and liability and secure evidence to support your claim. We could build a strong case based on the facts, assess the full extent of your damages, negotiate skillfully with insurance companies and pursue every form of compensation possible in your case. Contact us today at (818) 550-1111.