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Two Faces Of Product Liability

The author, an engineer, has rendered opinions in cases with each face of product liability.

Most product liability lawsuits are based on either failure to warn or intrinsic danger. To the accident or property loss victim and lawyer, failure to warn includes adequate labels, adequate instruction manuals, and offers of training. Yet to the product manufacturer it requires only a small cost and no change in the product itself to prevent accidents, property damage, and lawsuits from failure to warn. Many accidents result from failure to warn and such accidents are not covered by worker s compensation insurance.

The other face of product liability is intrinsic danger in the product. The variety of such dangers is as great as the variety of products. Yet such intrinsic dangers can be eliminated by thoughtful study and safety modification of the product by the manufacturer or they can be the basis of a product liability lawsuit if the plaintiff shows that such modification could have been made without substantial interference with the product s marketability.

Both manufacturers and plaintiff attorneys can benefit by consulting design engineers and human factors specialists.

Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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