Hyundai sued for wrongful death

by John O'Brien |
Aug. 24, 2006, 6:13am

CHARLESTON - A father blames the makers of his daughter's car for her death in an automobile accident on April 17.

John Borders, of Kopperston, filed suit individually and as the personal representative of the Estate of Kimberly Dawn borders Aug. 15 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Hyundai Motor Co., Hyundai Motor America, Mountaineer Hyundai and Autoliv Australia.

Autoliv is the designer and manufacturer of the occupant restraint system in the 2003 Hyundai Tiburon his daughter was ejected from during a wreck, Borders says.

He says Kimberly was driving east at 10 a.m. on U.S. Route 460 near Oakvale when she drifted into the median. Her car turned onto its side and slid into a concrete water drain installed in the median, causing it to start flipping end-over-end.

"During the crash, as the vehicle overturned, the seatbelt disengaged," the complaint says. "As the Hyundai Tiburon finally came to rest in the median, the plaintiff's decedent was partially ejected from the driver's side window."

Kimberly, a 24-year-old college student, was pronounced dead on the scene.

"The design, manufacture and/or marketing of the Hyundai Tiburon equipped with the Autoliv occupant restraint system created such a risk of injury to occupants of the vehicle that a reasonably prudent designer, manufacturer and/or marketer of motor vehicles, being fully aware of the risks, would not have placed it on the market," the complaint says.

Borders charges the defendants with strict liability, breach of warranty and a stake for punitive damages.

He is represented by Timothy Bailey of Charleston law firm Bucci, Bailey and Javins.

Judge Paul Zakaib has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1619

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Bucci, Bailey and Javins

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