Nissan Murano has defect allowing vehicle to be turned off in any gear, suit claims

Michelle Keahey May 16, 2011, 4:00am


A recently filed federal lawsuit claims that the 2009 Nissan-manufactured Murano has a design defect that enables the vehicle to be turned off in any gear and exited.

After suffering injuries when her vehicle rolled over her foot, Janette Francis Taylor and Clarence Taylor filed suit against Nissan North America Inc. and Nissan Motor Co. on May 2 at U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

If the vehicle is not in latched park before it is turned off, it is free to roll and cause severe injuries, the lawsuit states. Unlike similar vehicles, the Nissan's intelligent key system allows the vehicles to be turned off in any gear and the driver to remove the key. There is not a solenoid to lock the transponder into place to ensure the vehicle is in park before the vehicle is turned off, the suit claims.

The lawsuit was originally filed in federal court in Northern California but that court declined to exercise jurisdiction over the personal injury claims and dismissed the class for refiling at federal court in New Orleans.

The Taylors are seeking damages for medical expenses, emotional distress, interest, for the purchase price of the vehicle, attorney's fees and court costs.

The plaintiffs are represented by Bruce S. Kingsdorf and Dawn M. Barrios of Barrios, Kingsdorf & Casteix of New Orleans, J. Van Robichaux, Jr. of Robichaux Law Firm of New Orleans and Scott P. Nealey and Cecilia Han of Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein of San Francisco, California. Jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Jay C. Zainey is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:11-cv-01020

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