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Defective Products Can Cause Workplace Injuries

Defective ControlIn most cases, if an employee in California is injured on the job, he or she is entitled to collect benefits under the state’s workers’ compensation system. Workers’ compensation benefits are generally available even if the employee was partially at fault for his or her own injuries. There are situations, however, in which workers’ compensation is either not available or insufficient to cover an injured worker’s needs. When this happens, the injured worker may need to file a third-party lawsuit against the person or entity whose actions or negligence caused the injuries. Such may be the case when a worker is injured due to a defective or dangerous product used in his or her workplace.

Product Liability Injuries

There are countless ways in which a worker can be injured by a dangerous or defective product—and some you might never have considered. A worker in a tool and die shop, for example, could suffer injuries if one of the machines in the shop was defective and installed safety features failed to work as intended. The same is true for construction workers who rely on power tools, safety harnesses, and scaffolding. Even an office worker could be hurt if his or her office chair broke because it was improperly manufactured.

Proving Product Liability

There are three basic grounds for a product liability lawsuit:

  • Design defect: A product that is defectively designed is one that creates unreasonable risk for injury based on its concept and design. A defective design affects an entire line of products. Products that contain mechanical defects or are unduly flammable are found in many workplaces;
  • Manufacturing defect: Some products are designed properly but a mistake or oversight occurs while the product is being manufactured or assembled, leading to possible injury. For example, a container that is supposed to be corrosion-resistant may not have received the proper treatment during manufacturing, leaving it prone to deterioration and leaks. If the container was meant to hold toxic chemicals, workers could be in danger of harmful exposure;
  • Failure to warn: Certain products are inherently dangerous, such as those with heavy moving parts or cutting blades. It is the manufacturer’s responsibility to provide adequate warnings of the dangers associated with the product and to develop safety protocols.
Call Us for Help

Defective products can come in all shapes and sizes, from handheld box cutters to forklifts to heavy-duty overhead cranes. If you have been injured due to a product defect at work, an experience San Jose workplace injury attorney can help. Call (408) 289-1417 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a member of the team at Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. today.

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