Injuries from Defective Products
A product liability injury must result in significant harm to the consumer due to a manufacturing defect, incorrect design, or a failure to adequately warn about the risks of the product.
Product liability litigation has resulted in compensation to the injured and has played a vital role in making the public aware of product defects. The fear of litigation has pushed many manufacturers to become more responsible toward the public to provide safer products that carry adequate warnings.
As a result, countless injuries have been avoided.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), every year more than 33 million people are injured by consumer products in the home. Some come from:
- Magnets – Hidden magnets in toys, jewelry, and building sets have resulted in serious injuries to children when they fall out and are swallowed. Since 2005, eight million magnetic toys have been recalled due to magnets which led to one death and 86 injuries.
- Recalled Products – The CPSC issues recall notices almost daily, about 400 in one year, but once a recalled product is in the home it often is overlooked. Dangerous products can include children’s furniture, toys, electrical products, tools, and appliances. Most recently, recalled cribs led to the strangulation and suffocation of dozens of infants.
- Tip-overs – Furniture that is unstable can tip over and crush young children. Often a child will climb on top of a television stand or bookcase that is not secured properly to retrieve an object. This hazard results in an average of 22 deaths every year.
- Window coverings – At least 3,700 injuries and 12 deaths have resulted from unsecured window drapery or blind cords that can form a loop and choke a child. Window screens should not be relied on to keep kids from falling out of a window the way a window guard is designed to do.
- Pool & Spa Drains – Missing or broken drain covers can entrap bodies in an unbreakable seal at the bottom of a pool or spa which led to 15 injuries and two fatalities from 2002 to 2004.
- FDA – The Food and Drug Administration oversees at least a quarter of all consumer spending including food, drugs, vaccines, and medical devices, a huge task considering the number of personnel needed to do an adequate job.
Without Adequate Resources Injuries Have Included:
- Medical Devices – Recalls for devices that unintentionally shock the heart or metal on metal joint implants that fail are just two of dozens of injuries resulting from defective medical devices which are regulated by the FDA. The list of defective medical devices that kill and injure every year is a long one as it is one of the least regulated divisions within the FDA.
- Pharmaceuticals – Because of the huge potential for profit, pharmaceuticals are aggressively advertised and promoted for many common ailments such as diabetes, high cholesterol, and weight loss. But all drugs have side effects, some more than others, which in recent years have included the risk of heart attack or stroke, diabetes, organ failure, and psychotic episodes, just to name a few.
- Foodborne Contamination – Foodborne contamination comes from bacteria, parasites or viruses and is responsible for sickening about 76 million and killing 5,000 in the U.S. every year. A range of symptoms includes severe cramps, diarrhea, dehydration, vomiting, and kidney failure. The most common foodborne illnesses come from salmonella, listeria, toxoplasma and E. coli bacteria. Food is a product just like an automobile and can be considered defective if handled improperly.
- Automobiles – About 115 people are killed every day in car crashes in the U.S. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) govern vehicle safety and roof structure crashworthiness. With standards so weak, most rollover accidents can collapse the vehicle roof one-foot, which can result in neck, spinal cord and serious head injuries, death and quadriplegia. Other traumatic injuries result from seat belt and air bag failures and the high center of gravity of some SUVs that leads to vehicle rollovers.
- Auto Seatbacks – The standard for automobile seatback strength is not adequate to resist the forces of a typical rear end collision, in fact, the standard has been compared to a typical folding lawn chair. While a few manufacturers have standards that exceed the minimum, collapsing rearward seats have resulted in severe head and spinal cord injuries, some of which are not survivable.
When a weak regulation meets an ineffective agency, some large corporations have been known to put profits before consumers and skimp on safety.
Call a Jacksonville Product Liability Injury Lawyer Farah & Farah Today at 877-245-6707
The purpose of defective product laws and litigation is to provide an economic incentive for manufacturers to improve product safety by imposing strict liability on manufacturers, retailers and distributors. Vigilance on the part of a Jacksonville product recall attorney can force the manufacturers to be more accountable for their safety of their products and welfare of their consumers. Please contact us today to discuss your product liability matter.