Dangerous Design | Defect Creates Risk of Serious Injury and Deat

ET-Plus Guardrail

Trinity Industries Inc. is one of the biggest makers of guardrail end-caps. These devices are designed to take on the impact of an oncoming vehicle. The safety feature on the end-cap of the guard rail is what the ET-Plus Guardrail is. In a crash, the guardrail is extruded through the ET-Plus and deflected away from the vehicle. It was tested for crash safety and approved for use on highways in 2000.

What is the issue?

A whistleblower lawsuit alleges that Trinity gently redesigned the ETPlus in 2005, cutting back the size of the feeder chute in a sense which makes the guardrail more inclined to get stuck and spear a vehicle rather than deflecting the car away from the guardrail.

The width of the head of the guardrail was reduced from five inches to four inches. The feeder channel of the guardrail height was reduced from 15-3/8 inches to 14-7/8 inches.

Following the litigation that was filed in March 2012, safety officials with the federal highway system say they were unaware the design of the ET-Plus was altered. The suit is now pending in federal court in Texas.

Why Should You Worry?

The redesigned ET-Plus Guardrail was not crash-tested or accepted by the Federal Highway Administration, so it is not known if it performs in addition to the initial layout. Trinity insists it is not dangerous and continues to sell the ET-Plus in all 50 states.

Nevada has removed the ET-Plus from the listing of approved products and is installing them, but no action has been taken by most states. On the primary highways, the ETPlus is in California.

Guardrail Injury Lawsuits

When guardrails punctured their automobiles in an accident, nationwide, lawsuits had been filed on behalf of numerous drivers who were injured or died. Many of these injuries were described by ABC15:

  • In Tennessee, a 39-year-old girl who crashed into an end terminal died from severe organ damage and serious bleeding after the guardrail punctured her car and went through her torso.
  • After a guardrail had spiked through her driver’s side door in an injury in January 2010, a 20-year old woman lost her right leg in New York.
  • In Florida, a 20-year old guy was a passenger in a vehicle that swerved off the road. He had to have his left leg after his car was punctured by a guardrail.

Have you been in an accident with a Trinity ET-Plus Guardrail and thinking about a lawsuit?

St. Louis Products Liability law firm, is now accepting Trinity ET-Plus Guardrail induced personal injury cases in all 50 states. In case somebody you know or you were injured by a defective highway guardrail, you must contact our attorneys promptly for a free case consultation. We work on a contingency fee and charge no fee until we win your case. Contact us today.