Who is Responsible for Defective Construction Tools, Machinery, and Equipment Injuries?
If you work at a construction site, you know your job has risks. So, you wear your hard hat and steel toe boots, follow safety procedures and keep your workspace free from known hazards. You don’t expect the machines, tools and equipment that you are using to contribute to that risk.
Yet, every day, workers are injured by the tools they need to do their job. A handle falls off a hammer, a drill bit shatters, a ladder collapses, or a power tool overheats causing serious injury. Who is responsible for these types of accidents?
What is Product Liability Law?
Injuries caused by defective or dangerous products are covered by product liability law. Product liability law requires manufacturers to produce products that meet safety expectations. This doesn’t mean that every product has to be completely safe in every way; this isn’t practical and could interfere with product performance. But, products should be free from unexpected defects and dangers. What does this mean?
If you are using a circular saw, you know that the blade is sharp. If it wasn’t, it wouldn’t cut. The sharp blade is an expected danger. Because you expect this danger, you would never put a hand in the path of the saw or under the saw’s guard. If you did, you would expect to be seriously injured.
Product liability law covers those injuries that you wouldn’t expect. Suppose you turn on the circular saw and get an electric shock. You find out that the shock occurred because the saw was fitted with a two-prong plug instead of a grounding, three-prong plug. This is a danger that you wouldn’t expect from a product that meets safety standards.
Product liability law allows individuals who are injured by unsafe products to seek compensation from the product manufacturer, part manufacturer, installer, designer, wholesaler, or distributor.
Winning Your Product Liability Case
Product liability cases can only be filed when a product is unsafe due to its design or manufacturing. In order to win a product liability claim, you and your attorney must show that your injury was caused by a defect in the product. There are three types of defects covered by product liability law:
- Design defects: The design of the product is unsafe. This means that the product is designed in a way that can cause injury.
- Manufacturing defects: The product is defective because a problem in the manufacturing or assembly process. This includes defects caused by substandard materials or parts.
- Marketing defects: The product is safe when used as intended, but improper marketing of the product can cause injury. This includes marketing a product for unsafe uses or not providing the information needed for safe use. Inadequate instructions, improper labeling, or insufficient safety warnings are considered marketing defects.
You may have been told that you cannot file a lawsuit if you are injured at work. However, the law makes an exception for injuries that are caused by defective or dangerous products. If you were injured by a dangerous machine or tool, you can file a product liability claim – even if your injury occurred at work. You can file a claim even if your injury is covered by workers’ compensation.
The product liability attorneys at Ostroff Injury Law handle cases involving:
- Ladder and scaffolding
- Cleaning equipment
- Office machines
- Small appliances
- Defective power tools
- Electrocution injuries
- Machinery burns
- Manufacturing equipment
- Construction vehicles and heavy equipment
- Motor vehicle defects
- Chemical exposure injuries
- Recalled products
If you feel your injury was caused by a product defect, give us a call at (484) 351-0350. Our attorneys will investigate your claim and tell you if you have a product liability case. There is no charge for the consultation.
Construction sites are full of toxic substances which range from hazardous fumes to corrosive chemicals to dangerous building materials like asbestos and lead. If you are injured by a toxic substance, you may have the right to file a third-party lawsuit against the manufacturer of the chemical or product that caused your injury.
Let Ostroff Injury Law Help You
The PA and NJ construction injury attorneys at Ostroff Injury Law have a reputation for excellence. We are committed to helping every injured worker get the compensation he or she needs to get back on his or her feet. We’d love to help you.