Syracuse Car Accident Lawyers Question Whether Liverpool SUV Fire Was Due to Vehicle Defect

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The cause of a Syracuse SUV fire and driver death is under investigation after morning crash along Old Liverpool Road.

Car and truck fires occur for a number of reasons, including vehicle defects, poor maintenance, collisions, and the conduct of occupants.

According to, at around 7:30 a.m. on January 11, 2013, an SUV crashed along Old Liverpool Road. Witnesses recall that the vehicle was on fire and the driver's side door was open before it crashed. The driver was killed.

"This type of accident raises flags for a Syracuse personal injury lawyer," said Michael A. Bottar, an attorney with experience investigating defective vehicle cases throughout the State of New York, including injuries stemming from car, bus and truck fires. Bottar added, "few know that approximately 33 vehicle fires occur every hour and cause about one death every day." Unfortunately, it can be difficult to determine the cause of a car or truck fire because the vehicle junked and destroyed before analysis by an expert.

Statistics maintained by the National Fire Protection Association provide that car fires are less common than they used to be, but still occur for a number of reasons including mechanical failures, computer malfunctions, electrical shorts, misuse, or due to collisions. Bottar added, "depending upon the cause of the car or truck fire, the injury or death may be preventable. This is especially true when the cause of a vehicle fire is a problem known to the manufacturer of the car or truck. Sometimes problems result in recalls. Other times, companies decide to leave an unsafe vehicle on the road because it will cost more to recall a car or truck than it will to settle a lawsuit for injuries or wrongful death."

An experienced New York car fire lawyer knows that, statistically, most vehicle fires start in the engine compartment. Other less frequent sources for fires include the diver or passenger compartment, fuel tank, fuel line, trunk, cargo area, wheel well and the exterior surface of a car or truck. Common injuries as a result of a vehicle fire include burns and smoke inhalation, as well as a constellation of injuries that can stem from a crash after a fire occurs.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regulates highway vehicles and orders recalls. Information about problems with cars and trucks, as well as recalls, can be found at An example of a recent recall was issued by General Motors on or about August 17, 2012, when GM notified the NHTSA that 249,260 midsize sport utility vehicles had a potential fire hazard. Namely, that the interior door panels could catch fire if fluid caused a short circuit. The recall affected 2006-07 Chevrolet Trailblazer and GMC Envoy SUVs, as well as certain 2006-07 Buick Rainier, Saab 9-7X and Isuzu Ascender SUVs.

About Bottar Leone, PLLC

Bottar Leone, PLLC, is a regionally respected and nationally recognized upstate New York personal injury law firm founded in 1983. Based in Syracuse, New York, with satellite offices in Albany, Watertown and Utica, the firm's dedication to injured patients, workers, consumers and motorists has earned it repeated recognition by U.S. News and World Report/BestLawyers® as a "first tier" firm for personal injury litigation. The Firm has also been featured in Newsweek, SuperLawyers®, and The Best Lawyers In America®.

Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Some or all of this release may be considered attorney advertising.

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