Steering Wheels are Literally Falling Off Teslas in New JerseyThere are many car components that you can probably live without. You can still drive your car without air conditioning. Sure, it might get a little boring – but you can get from point A to point B without functioning Bluetooth. But if there is one thing you need, it is your steering wheel. If this component comes loose, you are in a bit of a pickle, to say the least. Without a steering wheel, the best you can do is slam on the brakes and hope for the best. The prospect of dodging an oncoming vehicle or even a pedestrian goes right out the window.

Unfortunately, this is what at least one family experienced while driving their new Tesla in New Jersey. The authorities are now investigating these incidents, which have apparently been occurring across the nation. But what exactly caused this to happen? How could Tesla sell a vehicle with faulty steering wheels? Why didn’t the inspectors spot this issue? These are just a few questions that federal investigators are trying to answer. But perhaps the most important question is simple: Can you sue if you suffer injuries due to a faulty vehicle?

The Shocking Moment When a Steering Wheel Popped Off a Tesla SUV in New Jersey

On March 9, it was reported that a federal investigation had uncovered a serious issue with Tesla SUVs. When a New Jersey family was driving their Model Y, the steering wheel completely came loose. This was just five days after the family had purchased the vehicle. Luckily, the road was straight – and the driver was simply able to slow down and come to a halt at the road divider up ahead. There were no vehicles behind him, so there was also no danger of being rear-ended.

It is safe to say that this situation could have been much, much worse. And this was just one example of an issue that is said to be present in more than 120,000 customers who recently purchased the Model Y SUV in 2023. So, what exactly is the issue here? Almost inconceivably, the vehicles were shipped out with a missing retaining bolt – meaning that there is literally nothing holding these steering wheels onto the steering column. Pull back on the steering wheel just a little, and it may come right off the column. The investigators explained:

“A friction fit maintained the connection between the steering wheel and the column splines during operation until separation. Sudden separation occurred when the force exerted on the steering wheel overcame the resistance of the friction fit while the vehicles were in motion.”

The New Jersey driver told journalists that Tesla actually charged him over $100 to put the missing bolt onto the steering column. But when the motorist complained and said that he had “lost faith in the company,” Tesla quickly offered to fix the issue for free. This is the latest development in a worrying set of chapters for Tesla. A recent incident saw a Tesla crash straight into a parked fire truck without braking – leading investigators to suspect the Autopilot was engaged at the time. Many other crashes may have been caused at least in part by the malfunctioning Autopilot feature. Issues have also been reported with the vehicles’ suspension, brakes, and other components.

Can I Sue for a Malfunctioning Vehicle?

There are many examples of potential lawsuits due to malfunctioning or defective vehicles:

  • Airbag Lawsuits: Whether your airbag failed to deploy or deployed in a manner that caused you serious injuries, you can sue for these incidents.
  • Brake Lawsuits: If your brakes were faulty and you maintained them regularly, you may be able to sue. For example, there have been reports of Teslas suddenly braking for no reason.
  • Accidents Caused by Recalled Parts: If auto manufacturers are forced to recall vehicles for faulty parts, you may be able to sue if those parts cause accidents and injuries.

Where Can I Find a Personal Injury Attorney in New Jersey?

If you have been searching for a personal injury attorney in New Jersey, look no further than Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. Over the years, we have helped numerous injured plaintiffs strive for the best results, including those who have been injured in car accidents. If a serious malfunction or defect caused your vehicle to crash, you are fully entitled to hold the manufacturer accountable. Doing so can provide you with compensation for medical expenses, missed wages, emotional distress, and any other damages you may have incurred. The issue with Tesla steering wheels is just one example of a dangerous defect, and many other manufacturers make similar mistakes all the time. Book your consultation today to take your first steps toward justice.

The firm’s principals, Gabriel R. Lependorf and David E. Silverstein, have each been representing injured victims in the State of New Jersey for over thirty years.

Call Our Office At (609) 240-0040 Today for Help