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Posted On: April 14, 2012

Massachusetts Auto Defect, and Not Drunken Driving, May Have Been Cause of Deadly Pittsfield Crash

According to the lawyer of a Pittsfield man charged with motor vehicle homicide while under the influence of drugs, driving to endanger causing serious bodily injury, and driving under the influence of alcohol, the deadly Massachusetts car accident that claimed the life of 25-year-old Michael F. Ashline may have actually been caused by an auto defect. Douglas F. Guinan's defense attorneys want Hyundai Motor America to provide them with documents related to malfunctions involving the electronic steering system of the 2011 Sonata.

Guinan’s legal team contends that the head-on 2010 Pittsfield auto crash that killed Ashline is not the first time that a 2011 Sonata suddenly pulled left or turned without the driver actually instigating this action. Pointing to a recall of Hyundai vehicles that the automaker had issued (around the time of the accident) due to pulling and vibration in the steering wheel, the defense believes that it was this type of safety issue that caused Guinan's accident.

The automaker has agreed to give over engineering test reports related to this safety issue to the defense. However it turned down other elements of the request, such as access to client complaints prior to the recall. Meantime, Guinan’s lawyer believes there is evidence showing that what hospital staff had thought was intoxication at the time of the crash was actually the result of a traumatic brain injury. Guinan and the driver of the vehicle that Ashline was a passenger in, Nichole A. Rudd, were both seriously injured in the Berkshire, Massachusetts car accident.

Auto Products Liability
There are instances when an auto defect, and not driver negligence, is the cause of a deadly car accident. For example, a man convicted of killing three people in a 2006 car accident was set free in 2010 when it was discovered that Toyota sudden acceleration was the actual cause of that deadly collision.

Pursuing Massachusetts auto products liability recovery from an automaker can be an intimidating and arduous process, which is why you should not to try to do this without experienced legal help.

Defense lawyers eye auto defect in fatal crash, The Berkshire Eagle, April 10, 2012

Hyundai


More Blog Posts:
Massachusetts Cyclist Killed while Riding Recalled Cervélo Bicycle, Mechanical Failure Likely, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, April 11, 2012

NHTSA Seeks to Modify Keyless Ignition Systems to Minimize Safety Risks, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, March 22, 2012

Is CPSC’s SaferProducts.Gov Database Preventing Boston Injuries?, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, March 17, 2012

To speak with one of our experienced Boston injury lawyers, contact Altman ^ Altman, LLP today.

By publishing this information on this Web site, the Boston, Massachusetts law firm of Altman & Altman LLP is not claiming to represent any clients or cases mentioned here. The content provided is designed to inform readers and is not intended as legal advice.