Defective Airbag Malfunctions
Defective airbags can malfunction due to a number of issues. Some common malfunctions include:
Airbag Propellant Wafers
Poorly manufactured airbag propellant wafers can be prematurely set off under certain conditions, especially in hot and humid climates. In these cases, airbags have been known to explode, firing a barrage of metal shards at the driver or passenger.
Ignition Switch Issues
Airbags don't usually function when a car is turned off. This is a concern if a car suffers from a faulty ignition switch, where the car will turn off while driving because of unintentional contact between the driver and the key-chain. Under these circumstances, if the ignition switch problem causes an accident, the airbags may fail to deploy.
Defective Electronic Sensors
In newer vehicles, electronic sensors are responsible for switching airbags on when a driver or passenger is seated. If these sensors are defective or not working well, the airbags may fail to deploy.
Lack of Side Curtain or Canopy Airbag System
In most cases, a connected series of side curtain air bags runs both sides of a vehicle and connects the side airbags to the front. The failure of these to function properly can cause serious injury.