It is not recognized by much of the consuming public that there are various types of automotive glass products used in the windows of cars, trucks and SUVs, and that the use of certain glass or glazing products can make a substantial difference in providing occupants protection in accidents.
All too often, occupants of vehicles are seriously injured and killed when they are ejected or partially ejected during automobile accidents. It has long been recognized within the automotive safety community that keeping occupants inside of or “contained” within the vehicle is critical to occupant protection. Once an occupant is ejected or partially ejected, their chances of being catastrophically injured or killed dramatically increases.
It has long been recognized within the automotive safety community that keeping occupants inside of or “contained” within the vehicle is critical to occupant protection.
Most cars today utilize “laminated” glass for the windshield and “tempered” glass for the side and rear windows. Laminated glass, also sometimes generally referred to as “safety glass,” is specifically designed to remain intact in an accident and to absorb energy and contain the vehicle’s occupants should they strike the windshield in a crash. Most laminated glass products are constructed of two layers of glass bonded together by an inside layer of plastic, usually PVB (polyvinyl butyral), which prevents the laminated glass from shattering. As a result, it is extremely effective in preventing occupant ejections and related injuries outside of the vehicle.
Tempered glass, on the other hand, is a single piece of heat-treated glass which is designed to shatter into small pieces when impacted or caused to flex in an accident. Unfortunately, when this happens the broken glass leaves behind an open hole or portal through which occupants can be ejected or come into direct contact with the road or ground. Because of the prevalence of tempered glass in side and rear windows in many vehicles today, occupant ejections and partial ejection-related injuries and deaths are common.
Many of these tragic injuries and fatalities could be prevented if manufacturers incorporated laminated or other forms of safety glass or glass-plastics into all vehicle windows. However, despite awareness of the importance of occupant containment in safe vehicle design, the industry has been resistant to utilizing safer glass alternatives in all windows.
As Glass attorneys we can help
If you or someone you know was ejected or partially ejected in an accident and seriously injured, contact us for a free evaluation of your potential glass defect case. At the Didier Law Firm we have extensive experience in litigating accidents involving glass defect claims, and stand ready to bring our knowledge and expertise to bear for consumers injured when manufacturers fail to incorporate safe glass.