Defective guardrails on the interstate have been the cause of many serious injuries and deaths across the nation. After a collision, many victims are left with the uncertainty of who is responsible when a guardrail impales a car or fails to protect a car from going into a perilous ditch.
Recently, guardrail manufacturing company Trinity Industries has been the subject of multiple lawsuits for changing the design of the rail to save money. These cheaper rails then flooded the market and were sold to governments across the U.S.
Trinity Industries, which is based in Dallas, TX, allegedly decreased the width and height of the end terminal of the guardrail by one inch. This action, according to the lawsuits filed, took place without Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) approval, as required by federal law.
A properly functioning guardrail should absorb the energy of an object colliding into it. The force of impact should make the guardrail peel back in a circular motion. According to the lawsuits filed, the cheaper designed guardrails did not peel back, and pierced the colliding vehicles.
In October of 2014, a federal jury awarded $525 million to the U.S. Treasury for Trinity Industries’ negligence and fraud. This verdict was one of the largest in the U.S. for 2014.
Many states have banned the installation of further Trinity Industries’ guardrails and are requiring that existing guardrails be removed. Those states include Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Texas, Mississippi, California, and Virginia.
If you or a loved one was injured in a motor vehicle collision involving a guardrail, talk to one of our experienced attorneys about your rights and potential claims. There is no cost for a consultation with our attorneys. Call (770) 394-8909 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.