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Defective warning lights: What happens when they don’t work

| Jun 15, 2021 | Defective Products & Machinery |

Today’s cars and trucks come with sophisticated warning systems and detection programs that are supposed to keep motorists safe.

When something is wrong or a part requires service, computer software will typically trigger a warning light to alert drivers. These lights tell us about problems that we might not detect independently, so they are essential. Unfortunately, however, they do not always work the way they need to, ultimately putting motorists in danger.

Why warning lights are critical

Warning lights in the car tell us it is time to get gas, change the tires’ air pressure or replace burned-out taillights. These standard lights may not call out the most hazardous issues, but other lights reveal serious problems with a car and require immediate attention.

Some of these include:

  • Engine temperature lights
  • Battery alerts
  • Check engine lights
  • Airbag indicators
  • Brake, traction and stability warning lights

When these lights come on, drivers will want to address the issue as soon as possible. Otherwise, occupants could be at risk of a severe accident or injury.

That said, there are some times when warning lights do little more than frustrate and annoy drivers. This can be the case when a warning light is faulty.

What happens when lights fail

Recently, for instance, General Motors issued a recall of four different makes of vehicles, citing faulty airbag warning lights.

Reports note that the flaw stems from a software issue that causes airbag warning lights to turn on and off inconsistently. It will illuminate when there are no real problems with the airbag systems, and it may not turn on when something actually is wrong. 

This issue of warning lights being inconsistent or turning on for seemingly no reason can endanger motorists every time they get in their vehicles. Unfortunately, people may ignore warnings from faulty lights and assume there really is nothing wrong, allowing legitimate problems to continue. Without maintenance and repairs, critical systems that should protect occupants can fail.

When faulty auto parts contribute to a severe crash, legal action can be an option for victims and their families who want to hold a negligent party accountable for their losses.

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