Recent years have seen many advancements in auto technology. Every new feature is designed to make driving easier and more convenient for consumers. However, convenience can come at a high price.
In the last 12 years, 28 people have lost their lives and 45 have been injured as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning after drivers forgot to turn off the start/stop button on their keyless ignition and instead left it running in a closed garage.
The high cost of convenience
While many keyless car models have fail-safe features such as audible alerts that sound if a driver tries to leave while the car is still on, or an automatic shut-off feature if the key fob travels more than ten feet from the car, not all keyless car models carry these features, and in those that do, the features do not always work. For instance, many people simply leave their key in the car when it is secured in a closed garage.
Carbon monoxide is deadly. It is a colorless, odorless gas and as a result is nearly impossible to detect without a functional carbon monoxide monitor.
The Huffington Post reports on multiple individuals who lost loved ones as a result of keyless ignition. Doug Schaub lost his father, Fred Schaub, after he forgot to turn off the keyless ignition. “After 75 years of driving, my father thought that when he took the key with him when he left the car, the car would be off.” He was not the only one. Tim Maddock lost his girlfriend, Chastity Glisson, after she accidentally left her Lexus running in the garage. "Nobody should have to lose a loved one… It's hard to move on, you know? You can't replace that."
Many have suggested including an automatic shut-off feature on keyless ignition systems to prevent future incidents, but the NHTSA does not currently have any plans to require such an addition to the system. Their argument is that many car owners want their cars to continue running after they walk away. For instance, car owners who leave their dogs in the car may want to keep the air conditioner running, for the animal’s safety.
Get an award-winning team on your side
The experienced personal injury and wrongful death lawyers Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone are ready to help you navigate the tumultuous aftermath of an accident. If you have lost a loved one due to carbon monoxide poisoning, do not hesitate. You need someone knowledgeable on your side to guide you through every step of the complicated process. You need the Salomone Advantage. Contact us today. We can provide you with a free case consultation.