When you purchase a product and use it, in the condition that it was purchased, for the purpose it was intended, you have the right to expect that you won’t suffer harm as a result of a product defect. But every year thousands of people die and millions are injured as a result of using unsafe consumer products. Consumer Product Safety Commission figures show that every year, as a result of unsafe and defective consumer products:
- More than 22,000 people die.
- Approximately 29 million people are injured.
- 79 percent of all defective product injuries happen to children under 15, and 45 percent to children 5.
- 114 babies and toddlers die each year from accidents associated with nursery products.
- 74,000 children are injured seriously enough to visit an emergency room.
Furthermore, between two and three hundred products are recalled every year when potential safety hazards are discovered. In some cases, the hazard is only discovered after an injury has occurred.
If you, your child, or someone else in your family has suffered a serious injury as a result of using a product in the manner intended, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries, with the help of an experienced Alabama personal injury attorney.
Legislation to Protect Consumers
The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) is a federal law, passed in 2008, creating new requirements for testing and documentation of consumer products and restricting levels of certain toxic and dangerous substances. It also criminalizes some serious violations, imposing fines and even jail time on manufacturers who violate the law.
Defective Product Types
These are some of the products that have been found to contain defects in their design, manufacture, or distribution that have caused injuries or deaths:
- Car, trucks, motorcycles
- Auto parts or components
- Construction materials
- Household products , fixtures, and furnishings
- Contaminated foods
- Electrical products
- Medical devices
- Prescription medications
- Over-the-counter drugs
- Implants and prostheses
- Excessively hot drinks
- Sports equipment
- Nursery products
- Kitchen appliances
- Baby cribs
- Children furniture
Defective Products that Kill and Injure Children
Modern parents have thousands of products to choose from to help them in caring for their young children. Products are marketed to parents that are designed to keep children, safe, comfortable, and entertained. But many of these products have done the opposite, and have caused varying degrees of harm to the children they were designed for; some have died as a result.
Children are especially vulnerable to dangerous products. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), more than 74,000 children younger under the age of five were treated in hospital emergency rooms for nursery product injuries in 2011. And 114 babies and toddlers die each year from accidents caused by poorly designed or manufactured nursery products.
Which Nursery Products Are Most Dangerous?
The CPSC lists the types of nursery products that have caused a large majority of infant and toddler deaths:
- Cribs and crib mattresses
- Bassinets and cradles
- Playpens and play yards
- Infant carriers
- Car seat carriers
- Baby baths and bath seats
These products are dangerous because of design flaws, manufacturing errors, and “failure to warn” defects, where parents have not been put on notice of certain potential dangers inherent in use of the product.
Applying the Doctrine of Strict Liability to Your Product Liability Case
In most personal injury cases, you need to prove that the person or entity that you’re alleging caused the injury was negligent, and that because of that negligence, you or your child suffered an injury that resulted in economic and/or non-economic damages. In defective product cases, the legal doctrine of “strict liability” applies. In essence, this means that you don’t have to prove negligence. You only need to prove that:
- The product contained a defect that caused it to be unreasonably hazardous.
- You or your family member used the product for its intended purpose, and it was not altered from the condition it was in when it was purchased.
- You or your family member sustained injuries while using the defective product.
- You or your family member suffered demonstrable damages as a direct result of using the product.
With the help of a well-experienced Alabama personal injury attorney, you can claim compensation for your damages in a civil action against the manufacturer, designer, packager, wholesaler, retailer, or anyone along the production and distribution chain.
Why You Need an Experienced Alabama Product Liability Attorney
Defective product cases are labor-intensive and complex. You’ll need to have an attorney with a substantial amount of experience in product liability litigation, who is able to call upon experts to assist in proving and developing your case, including product safety specialists, industrial engineers, and medical professionals to testify as to your damages.
Help for Your Injury Case in Birmingham, Alabama
In Alabama, you’ll find the focused product liability experience that you require at Drake law firm in Birmingham. With more than 25 years of total experience exclusively dedicated to personal injury and wrongful death law, we have the kind of in-depth knowledge, passion for justice, and proven ability that will give you the best chance to recover a full, fair, and adequate amount of compensation for your product-related injury. We have a nearly 99 percent success rate in the cases we accept—a record that is hard to match.
You Need to Act Now
Alabama has strict statutes of limitations that restrict the amount of time you have to file your product liability claim, so don’t wait until it’s too late; you could lose your right to compensation. Call Drake Law today for a free case consultation.