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Exploding sunroofs leave many at risk

broken glass car seat.jpeg

You may not be too surprised if a tire blows while you are driving. A flat tire may present an immediate danger if you are going too fast or not paying attention. However, in most cases, a driver can quickly realize what is happening and safely pull the vehicle off the road.

Some vehicle owners are dealing with a different kind of surprise. Since 1995, nearly 900 car owners have filed reports with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration because their sunroofs have shattered without warning and seemingly without cause. More than 70% of those reports have come in the past eight years. If you drive a vehicle with a sunroof, you may have concerns that this could happen to you.

No one takes the blame

The dangers of a shattering sunroof are many. In addition to the cuts and scrapes you may suffer from shards of glass pouring down on you and your passengers, the shock and confusion may cause you to lose control of your vehicle. Some drivers reported thinking someone had shot at them. Others were relieved no other cars were around because there may have been a collision. Ten different car brands are under investigation for exploding sunroofs. So far, none of the 10 has offered a viable explanation.

The vehicle owners report their sunroofs exploding while driving at various speeds. However, some also claim the glass roofs shattered while the vehicle remained parked in a driveway or parking lot. Without a pattern, automakers are slow to take responsibility for the exploding sunroofs. In fact, some manufacturers blame the incidents on road debris, temperature changes, even flying rocks kicked back from the victim's own vehicle. Some simply deny the problem exists.

What can you do?

If you own a vehicle with a sunroof, you may wish to educate yourself on the dangers of shattering glass. If you hear a popping or cracking sound as you drive, consider taking your car to the dealer for a careful inspection. In the event that you are driving when the sunroof shatters, try to remain calm and get yourself safely off the road.

However, if the shattering sunroof leads to an accident or injuries, you may have a fight on your hands. The car manufacturers are not always willing to admit they have a problem. You may need the support of a California attorney who will fight passionately for your rights.

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