Your example isn't as far off as you think:
One of the biggest conspiracy theories around 911 (Please not getting into that argument just an example) is that the building were *designed to withstand an airliner impact and so should not have collapsed. Lawsuits after the fact take such things into consideration:
If your building is not designed to such standards and a plane flies into it it is expected to fall and liability fall almost entirely with the terrorist. (I know there are exceptions... just in a "sanish" world.) BUT if your building is designed to withstand an airline impact and the building still falls because of faulty design then chances are more likely you'll win a lawsuit against the design firm and maybe the construction firm, etc.
Here in MN we had another excellent example: The 35W bridge that collapsed. There were *tons of lawsuits after that one and culpability fell on many groups. The bridge was designed to withstand a certain amount of weight but was also many decades old. It was a poor design in-general which is called "fracture critical" where a single failure can lead to total collapse. At the time it fell there were 100s of tons worth of construction trucks all being parked on the bridge along side regular rush hour traffic (think of these trucks much like the terrorist in the first example). You also had state inspectors who had been (or maybe not so much as they should have) regularly checking the bridge to validate its safety. *ALL of these groups were found liable to some extent and had to pay out settlements.
If you sell software or a service that has a contractual promise of a certain level of security or stability and that software doesn't live up to that spec there are all sorts of lawsuits involved. If you are in a software business where lives are on the line (Health Care, Weapons / Aerospace Tech / etc) then you can be damned sure they'll be coming after you if someone's life is lost. There isn't some magical bubble that keeps us developers from liability for the tools that we produce. The IS however a more acceptable level of lack of perfection given the natore of how complex the systems we create are and, frankly, how much did you pay us to build it right.. what promises did you pay me to live up to.