Tragic accident could be grounds for wrongful death claim

Oklahoma readers may know that Anton Yelchin, the famous actor, was recently killed in a tragic accident that involved a vehicle that was under recall. Yelchin was discovered pinned between his Jeep Grand Cherokee and his fence after it rolled into him. While the manufacturer claims that there is no reason to believe that a defect caused the vehicle to roll, the incident is under investigation and could be grounds for a wrongful death claim.

As of this past spring, automaker Fiat Chrysler recalled 1.1 million vehicles due to a problem with what is called monostable shifter. The gearshift is designed in such a way that vehicle owners may think that the vehicle is in park when it is actually still in drive. This has led to confusion with several other drivers, resulting in injuries, more than 200 crashes and 308 reports of property damage.

If the investigation concludes that a defective gearshift contributed to the untimely death of the young actor, a wrongful death claim could be appropriate. His family members who are left behind would have grounds to seek financial compensation for their financial losses, emotional duress and more. Anytime defective or dangerous car parts cause harm to innocent consumers, victims could be owed restitution for their pain and suffering.

Automakers can be held accountable for vehicles that cause harm, even if those vehicles are under recall. Lawyers can help victims understand their options for personal injury claims or wrongful death claims, as well as help them move forward with the most appropriate legal actions. Potential claimants in Oklahoma could be wise to complete case evaluations as soon as possible after accidents.

Source:, "Vehicle blamed for 'Star Trek' actor's death was subject of recall", Sonari Glinton, June 21, 2016

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