Mazda seeking the U.S. Supreme Court’s help in limiting lawsuits

Article by Christian A., on November 5, 2010

The automobile industry wants the Supreme Court to help limit lawsuits that charge carmakers for failing to install the best safety equipment. This case, which involves Mazda Motor Corp., “raises issues of enormous importance to auto manufacturers," according to Charles Territo, a spokesman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.

He asserted that there’s a fear that federal regulations would be "superseded" by a hodgepodge of state laws on personal injury claims. However, there’s a possibility that the Supreme Court will deadlock 4-4 since Elena Kagan, the newest justice, has disqualified herself.

Kagan, the Obama administration's solicitor general, had urged the court to take the case. With a tie vote, a lower court ruling would remain intact, favoring automakers without setting a national precedent.

What the auto industry and its allies are asking the court is to reinforce a 2000 decision that indicated that federal law shields automakers from state law claims on how fast manufacturers installed air bags, now a requirement in vehicles sold in the US.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, food producers and makers of children's products have weighed in on Mazda's side. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has 59 safety standards covering automotive components, such as windshield wipers, internal trunk releases and seat belts.

These standards set performance guidelines that manufacturers are required to comply with. The suit was filed against Mazda by the family of Thanh Williamson, 32, who died in 2002 in Utah as she had been a passenger on the rear aisle seat in the second row of a 1993 MPV minivan. [via autonews - sub. required]

Topics: mazda, lawsuit

If you liked the article, share on:

Comments

Recommended

There is no denying that the performance versions of the Jaguar F-Type and the Land Rover Range Rover are definitely hot – both in terms of looks and road dynamics....
by - February 21, 2017
Hyundai is introducing a new 2018 Accent that is not only wider and longer, but is now also sporting a new look that is more serious than the previous model....
by - February 20, 2017
Fans and enthusiasts of the BMW M2 in the United States could now rejoice. This comes as their favorite BMW M2 is getting a limited edition version as prepped by...
by - February 20, 2017
Carmakers usually leave us thirsty for information on whether they would introduce a new, refreshed or face-lifted vehicle and on when they intend to launch it. There are reasons for...
by - February 20, 2017
Cadillac’s CT6 full-size prestige-luxury sedan is still somewhat new. It has been offered to the global auto market for two model years – 2016 and 2017. But for those who...
by - February 19, 2017
Facebook

Youtube Channel

Tip Us
Do you have a tip for us?
Did you film an important event?
Contact us
Newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter!
Subscribe
Galleries