A jury in San Angelo (Texas) federal court has reached a $1.8 million award against Hyundai Motor Company in favor of the plaintiff – the father of a 19-year-old girl killed in 2007, reports GoSanAngelo.
The teenager was a passenger in a car driven by her sister when the car veered off the road and rolled over. Although she was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident, she was thrown out through the back window of the car because her seat was too far reclined. She was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital.
In filing the lawsuit, the father of the dead girl hopes to call on the auto industry to correct the design which allows a car to be driven with the seat reclined. Experts testified a car seat reclined past 45 degrees is unsafe and the safest position for the passenger seat is in the upright position.
The issue of the reclining seat got national attention in 1988 when the NTSB asked the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to research the problem.