Product Liability

Industries and corporations do not always make safety a top priority. Often products ranging from prescription drugs to heavy manufacturing equipment contain serious flaws that make them dangerous. An action for product liability can be brought against the product manufacturer, a parts manufacturer, wholesaler, retailer, and other potential defendants.

3 Common types of defective products
  • Defective Product Design - A case can be made for defective design when the product or item is inherently dangerous. The infamous Ford Pinto is a famous example of defective design. The gas tank of the Pinto was placed dangerously close to the rear bumper and could potentially explode in a rear-end impact. Given the frequency of rear-end accidents, this design was inherently dangerous and defective.

  • Defective Product Manufacturing - Defective manufacturing occurs when a safely designed product is assembled improperly. For example, every lawnmower that comes off the assembly line is supposed to be assembled to exact specifications. If one lawnmower somehow comes off the line with the blades improperly installed the manufacturer will be liable if the device causes injury.

  • Inadequate Warning or Instruction - When a manufacturer sells a potentially dangerous product they have an obligation to warn the consumer about the danger. If someone is hurt by the product because they lacked adequate warning, the manufacturer may be liable for damages.
Examples of Defective Products

Hundreds or thousands or items are recalled every year because of potential dangers in the design or manufacture. We often hear of dangers surrounding children's toys leading to a mass recall.

While too numerous to list the thousands of potential defective products, some examples are:

  • Drugs and pharmaceuticals with extremely dangerous or unknown side effects

  • Unsafe toys (i.e. choking hazard, lead paint, etc.)

  • Medical equipment malfunction

  • Airbag or seatbelt failure

  • Child seats or cribs that do not meet recognized standards

  • Contaminated food

Any product that causes harm can be the basis for a product liability claim. If you have been injured by a product that you believe is defective contact our office for a free consultation.

Rhode Island Injury Lawyer Blog - Product Liability