Anonymous asked in Cars & TransportationSafety · 1 decade ago

Car crash... legal help?

I was driving down a three lane road when i tried to change lanes from the furthest left lane into the centre lane while turning the steering wheel the entire car jerked me back into my original lane and in to the rear end of another car...****. so we both get out exchange info and such. once i pull off the road in my car which feels like the entire engine block was shoved backwards and same with the transmission (since i have to actually hold the shift stick in the proper gear). once i get out of the car i notice lug nuts missing all around my car all that is left is the one locking bolt on each wheel. Now here is where it gets hairy. Less than a week before this i had my winter tires put on at a mechanic shop, and i strongly believe that they never double checked the tightness of the bolts. so I have a pretty good feeling my car is a write off since it is a unibody and the front end is pretty smashed. So do i sue and get my money back from my car and if so what process should i take.

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You're in kind of a spot here. Obviously, the tire shop is going to say "when the car left here, all the lug nuts were in place". Proving otherwise will be YOUR problem, IF you CAN prove it.

    It's possible a thief tried to steal the wheels, but it seems they would have figured out they COULDN'T after the first one, so, in my opinion, you are going to be stuck with trying to get your ins co. to pay off the car.

  • 1 decade ago

    You don't have much of a case against the mechanic. It would be difficult to prove that it was their negligence that caused the wheel nuts to come off. What surprises me is that you didn't notice any problems with the cars handling before this. The nuts didn't come off all at once. I have experienced loose lug nuts on my own vehicle and the car developed a nasty shake and the handling suffered long before the nuts would have actually worked their way off (they were all loose but never came off). Metal fatigue in the studs can cause them to lose their temper in older or high mileage vehicles which causes the metal to soften and then to stretch when the nuts are tightened. They will loosen shortly afterward. This is also why everyone should look over their vehicle before driving it. As a professional truck driver I am required to inspect my truck daily before driving it and I carry that over to my personal vehicles as well. A quick circle check looking for under inflated/flat tires, burnt out bulbs, coolant or oil leaks takes less than five minutes in a car and obviously would have saved you a ton of problems..

    Source(s): 38 years on the road as a Tractor Trailer Driver, Heavy Equipment Driving instructor, Safety and Compliance officer (Accident Investigator), CAA Roadside Service Provider, Tow Truck Operator.
  • Bear
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    I'd say someone tried to steal you tires. A repair shop may forget to tighten one wheel or even miss one lug nut but not 3 or 4 on all four wheels. The onus would be on you to prove that the tire place was negligent and left off or faied to tighten the nuts . Unless this defect is deemed the cause of the accident you can't use that as a defence andf possibly u could be charged with operating an unsafe vehicle. All driver's are responsible to ensure the vehicle they are operating on public roads is safe.

  • 1 decade ago

    With the locking bolt being the only one left I'm leaning towards a would-be thief instead of a lousy mechanic.

    You'll need your insurance involved on this one, it's going to be a messy fight. If you don't have insurance, you're screwed. You'll need to hire an attorney just to fight the guy trying to collect from you, you'll never be able to collect money for your car unless you have insurance. It'll just be too tough to prove it was the shop's fault.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You can't prove anything here. Even if you could prove there were missing lugnuts before the accident, you couldn't prove it was the body shop's fault. Let your insurance company total out your car and start over again.

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