Learn how airbags can cause chemical burns and other injuries

Exploding Airbags Can Cause Burn Injuries

Over the past few years, the devastating injuries caused by defective Takata airbags have gotten a lot of media attention and spurred numerous personal injury lawsuits. The most common type of injury in these cases is lacerations caused by flying shrapnel from the exploding airbag canister. These lacerations can be quite serious since the shrapnel is directed at the motorist’s face and neck. There have even been cases of fatal injuries.

Amidst all the talk of shrapnel injuries, another potential danger associated with airbags may be getting overlooked, namely burn injuries.

Airbags and Chemical Burns

Airbags have to deploy rapidly in the event of an accident, which means they can’t be inflated with a simple air pump. Instead, inflation is fueled by a chemical reaction. First, a sensor detects the rapid deceleration that precedes a crash. This triggers a chemical reaction. In most cases, this means sodium hydroxide becoming an aerosol. This chemical change generates a lot of heat and gas, which inflates the airbag. After the impact, the airbag will deflate very quickly, and the hot gas should be dissipated safely through the proper vents.

When all goes well, this process provides protection and saves lives. However, in some cases, the hot gases and chemicals don’t stay where they belong. Chemicals may explode out of the airbag canister along with the shrapnel as in the case of the defective Takata airbags, or, in the case of improperly vented airbags, hot gas at temperatures up to 500°C may be released into the vehicle. This can cause second degree burns on the hands and forearms, inhalation injuries, and chemical burns affecting the eyes. There is also the potential for the heat of the gas to cause lightweight, synthetic fabrics to melt onto the body.

Have You Been Injured By an Airbag?

If you have been injured by an airbag, it is highly likely you are entitled to compensation. However, in order to get this compensation you will need the assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney. At The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker, we make an excellent choice of attorney because we know how to fight for your rights against big auto manufacturers and car part manufacturers. We have participated in many important automobile defect cases, including Takata airbag cases, rollover accident cases, and roof collapse accident cases. You can rely on us for superior quality representation. To learn more, call us at 800-333-0000 and request your free initial consultation.

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