Articles Tagged with product liability

The holiday season is typically the most dangerous time of the year when it comes to bringing dangerous or defective products into the home. But, like most aspects of life, COVID has also changed the risk of product injury. Pandemic quarantines have found all of us spending much more time at home. Online shopping has further complicated the picture when it comes to holding companies accountable for endangering consumers.internet-300x229

The Government Accountability Office reported last fall that the government’s watchdog for dangerous and defective products, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, needs to do a better job of protecting consumers and addressing the risks of today’s diversified online marketplace. Our defective product lawyers want consumers to know that anyone involved in marketing, supplying, manufacturing or delivering a dangerous or defective product can be held responsible for resulting damages under federal law.

Specifically, the agency found:

What did you get for Christmas?

Traditionally, the year-end holidays have been a time for family, gathering with friends, and exchanging gifts with those in your life with whom you are closest. COVID-19 has limited gatherings this year, but there is every indication Americans are making every effort to exchange gifts, albeit more often by mail.

The extra volume has inundated the postal system at a time when online purchases were already at record highs. The acceleration to a predominately online economy will continue to play out in the years ahead. But one risk that should not be forgotten is the risk of dangerous and defective products.1260938_christmas_tree_5-300x200

Our product injury attorneys in Fort Myers know more dangerous and defective products are brought into homes during the holidays than at any other time of the year. While some injuries may be no fault of a product, others are caused by defect or by products that are inherently dangerous, such as trampolines and all-terrain vehicles.

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Fisher-Price is recalling its Rock ‘N Play product, which has been linked to more than 30 infant deaths. The company is offering a cash refund to customers who have owned the product for six months or less. Those who have owned the product for longer can seek a pro-rated voucher refund from the company. cribinjury-300x199

MarketWatch reports the recall could cost Fisher-Price up to $60 million and involves nearly 5 million units. The Rock ‘N Play sleeper is manufactured in China and retails in the United States for between $40 and $149. We can see by the pro-rated refund “voucher” that the company continues to focus on the bottom line, and not on the safety of consumers.

Frequently recalls highlight the risk of serious or fatal injuries resulting from dangerous or defective consumer products. But issuing a recall does not relieve a company of the legal liability associated with marketing these products to consumers.

Mattel issued the recall after complaints to the company and the Consumer Product Safety Commission that infants could roll over and suffocate. The CPSC reports more than 30 infant deaths have occurred while using the product in the last decade. The company said the recall was voluntary and blamed some of the incidents on incorrect use of the products that were contrary to safety warnings and instructions. Our injury lawyers know neither the “voluntary” recall nor the assertion that the product was used incorrectly will protect the company from legal liability in this case.

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While the majority of auto accident injuries are the result of negligence by one or more motorist involved, crash victims shouldn’t overlook the possibility that a vehicle defect may have been a contributing factor, if not the sole accident attorney

The auto industry hasn’t garnered a great deal of public trust in recent years, as numerous class action lawsuits have revealed a long-standing pattern within the industry to conceal vehicle defects from unsuspecting members of the public. Last year, as noted by Automotive News, auto makers recalled a record 53.2 million vehicles for defects ranging from seat belt failures to malfunctioning airbags to non-working breaks. These are serious deficits that, even if they don’t cause a crash, may result in one suffering injuries that far worse than they otherwise would have been.

Now, we receive news of the latest reported problem, which involves an alleged defect wherein Chrysler Pacifica vans are shutting off suddenly in mid-travel. The New York Times reports one man in San Francisco was driving at 70 mph down the highway in his brand new van when the vehicle shut off without warning. As she explained, “It just died.” In the middle of a congested highway, the van slowed to a crawl with no power steering or electrical power. The driver edged his way over as far to the right as he could, trying desperately to get to the shoulder with what little juice was left as vehicles whizzed by. He was barely missed by a semi-truck that laid on the horn and was forced to swerve.  Continue reading ›

We trust the vehicles in which we rely on daily to be properly tested for safety. Unfortunately, too many auto manufacturers and makers of auto parts fail to adequately test these machines. When they fail or there is a vehicle defect, the consequences can be catastrophic personal injuries. car accident lawyer

Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eight Circuit reinstated a $1 million jury verdict in favor of a car accident victim rendered quadriplegic after his seat belt failed to prevent his head from striking the roof of the vehicle in a rollover crash. These types of product liability cases should be explored anytime someone is in

According to court records, the crash occurred five years ago when plaintiff driving a van collided with a boat that was being towed by another vehicle. At the time, plaintiff was driving his two sons and eight other people on a return trip to St. Louis following a Boy Scout camping trip in Minnesota. The initial impact of the crash didn’t cause significant damage. However, the van plaintiff was driving swerved and rolled at a relatively low-speed. Plaintiff was wearing his seat belt, but still slid far enough out of the seat for his head to connect with the roof of his van, dislocating his neck and severing his spinal cord. Nobody else in the vehicle was seriously hurt.  Continue reading ›

Comparative negligence is the legal theory that a plaintiff is at least partially to blame for his/ her own injuries. In some states, that fact alone can prohibit a person from collecting any damages whatsoever (pure contributory negligence). In other states, a plaintiff’s own negligence can’t be more than the negligence of other parties (modified comparative fault). In Florida, which follows a pure comparative negligence standard, any amount of comparative negligence won’t bar the claim, but it will proportionately reduce damages (per F.S. 768.81).car accident

Recently, the South Carolina Supreme Court weighed a case that asked whether the doctrine of comparative negligence applied in a crashworthiness product liability lawsuit against a vehicle manufacturer. That state follows a modified comparative fault model.

Although this is an out-of-state case, it’s worth examining because state supreme courts will often consider the rulings of sister courts in weighing similar circumstances. In this case, the court ruled that comparative negligence does not factor in a crashworthiness case. Further, public policy in that state doesn’t prohibit a plaintiff who was allegedly intoxicated at the time of a crash from bringing a claim of crashworthiness against the manufacturer of the vehicle. Continue reading ›

The Japanese auto product manufacturer pleaded guilty recently to fraud as part of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice in which it agreed to pay $1 billion in penalties for concealing an airbag defect that’s been blamed for at least 16 deaths and dozens of

However, this is likely not the end of the story. For one thing, there are pending civil lawsuits in Miami alleging product liability resulting in serious injury and wrongful death.

Additionally, Ford recently issued a safety recall of approximately 32,000 vehicles in the U.S. and Canada to replace defective Takata airbags in newer models. The automaker reported that while it was unsure whether any accidents or injuries were connected to the defect, the issue was certain airbags had been shown not to fully inflate in the event of a crash. In some instances, the airbag even became detached from the wheel.  Continue reading ›

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