Companies that produce consumer goods have a responsibility to design, manufacture and test their products for safety. Negligence at any stage of the production process can result in dangerous product defects that can cause catastrophic injuries or death. Some of the most common and serious defects affect vehicles, medication and medical devices. However, any item you purchase, from children’s toys to building material, may be defective if the manufacturing company neglects product safety standards and tests. If you sustain injuries from a dangerous or defective product, you may be able to pursue compensation for the losses you have suffered.
At Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., we handle a wide range of product liability claims for clients throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey and nationwide. This type of case is often complex, and requires extensive investigations and expert opinions. Our law firm has sufficient staff and resources to handle these claims, even those involving large, multi-national corporations. In the past, our personal injury lawyers obtained the largest award in Pennsylvania history for claims involving auto defects. In this case, our attorneys represented the victim of a rollover accident whose serious injuries resulted from a defective seatbelt design. We recovered a jury verdict of $55.3 million for our client.
What are the Different Types of Product Defects?
Product defects may occur at any stage of production. Therefore, if you are injured by defective products, you can seek compensation from any liable party in the production chain. This potentially includes the product’s designer, manufacturer, wholesaler, distributor, seller or repairer. Liability in these cases largely depends on the source and nature of the defect involved. The three general types of product defects are:
- Design defects. Some products are flawed from the very beginning due to defects in the initial design. Manufacturing companies should perform product safety tests to eliminate design defects. However, negligence during the planning or testing process can allow defective products into the market. For example, the designs of some vehicles include roof supports that are too weak to withstand the weight of the vehicle during a rollover. The result of this defect is often catastrophic roof crush injuries.
- Manufacturing defects. Even if the design of a product is safe, mistakes or negligence during the actual production can cause serious manufacturing defects. For example, if a tire manufacturer uses substandard rubber in production, then the resulting tires may be prone to blowouts, increasing the risk of serious motor vehicle accidents, especially at high speeds.
- Labeling defects. A product may be totally safe for its intended use, but may present certain dangers if used improperly. Therefore, manufacturing companies must provide adequate instructions and warning labels on their products to prevent accidental misuse of an item. These warnings must include any known injury risks and potential defects. For example, medication labels must include information about possible complications, such as the risk of cancer.
Any party in the chain of production can be held liable depending on the specific facts of a case. A product liability attorney can evaluate your case to determine who is at fault for your injuries.
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What are Some Common Examples of Defective Products?
Virtually any consumer item can be defective due to poor design, manufacture or labeling. However, certain products and defects are common bases for personal injury claims. Our product liability lawyers handle a variety of defect claims, including:
Defective construction equipment.
Construction workers depend on equipment like scaffolding, safety harnesses and industrial machinery to do their jobs. Product defects in any of this equipment can cause a serious construction accident.
Industrial machinery defects.
Defects in heavy industrial equipment like conveyor belts, forklifts and slitter machines can cause catastrophic injuries and wrongful death.
Dangerous drugs and pharmaceuticals.
Defective drugs are among the most dangerous defective products because the injuries they cause are usually internal and deadly. Additionally, some defective medication can cause deadly conditions slowly, over many years of use.
Defective medical devices.
Like medication, a defective medical device can cause serious, often irreversible internal injuries. Common examples of such devices include hip and knee implants, talcum powder and surgical mesh products.
Design or manufacturing defects in cars, vans, trucks and SUVs sometimes cause serious crashes. However, they can also result in more severe injuries or wrongful death in a vehicle accident as well. For example, defective Takata airbags may be unlikely to cause a crash, but they can inflict serious injuries during even a minor fender bender.
Defective highway guardrails.
A guardrail may fail to protect drivers during an accident if manufacturing or design defects cause it to fail. Even small design changes can make guardrails potentially dangerous.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a consumer product, you may be eligible to file a product liability lawsuit. It is important to remember that your product liability case is subject to a statute of limitations, which restricts the time you have to file a claim.
Defect Cause Your Injury? Call Our Philadelphia Product Liability Lawyers Today for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one sustained injuries due to a dangerous or defective product, we are here to help. Our Philadelphia lawyers can help you understand your rights and guide you through all aspects of the legal process. We are committed to helping our clients obtain the financial resources they need to make it through the difficult time following an injury or loved one’s death.
Contact our law firm today to speak with an experienced New Jersey or Pennsylvania product liability lawyer. We offer free initial consultations and handle cases on a contingency fee basis — you pay nothing to us unless we get results for you.