People who are harmed by defective merchandise may be able to file product liability claims against the manufacturers of such products. A manufacturing defect is generally some kind of error, either in the design or actual assembly of a product, which makes the product unsafe or dangerous for a consumer.
In order to hold a manufacturer liable for a defectively designed or manufactured product, the victim will need to prove that a product was defective, the defect existed prior to purchase, and the defect caused the victim’s injuries.
Pennsylvania Suggested Standard Civil Jury Instruction § 8.02 states that the manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler, etc. of a product is “the guarantor of its safety” and a product “must be provided with every element necessary to make it safe for its intended use, and without any condition that makes it unsafe for its intended use.” If a jury finds that a product—at the time it left the defendant’s control—lacked any element necessary to make it safe for its intended use or contained any condition that made it unsafe for its intended use, then “the product was defective, and the defendant is liable for all harm caused by the defect.”
Lawyer for Manufacturing Defects Injuries in West Chester, PA
If you suffered catastrophic injuries or your loved one was killed in southeastern Pennsylvania by a defectively manufactured product, it is in your best interest to retain legal counsel before speaking to anybody about the accident. Ciccarelli Law Offices handles product liability cases in Lancaster, Philadelphia, Malvern, Plymouth Square, Radnor, Springfield, Kennett Square, and King of Prussia.
Our West Chester personal injury attorneys represent clients on a contingency fee basis, which means that you pay only if you receive a monetary award. Call (610) 719-3190 right now to have our lawyers review your case and discuss all of your legal options during a free, no obligation consultation.
Chester County Manufacturing Defects Information Center
- What are some examples of manufacturing defects?
- How does a court determine liability for manufacturing defects?
- Where can I learn more about manufacturing defects in West Chester?
Types of Manufacturing Defects in Pennsylvania
Manufacturing processes can differ depending on the product in question, and any number of issues during the development process can lead to a product becoming defective. When a person has been harmed by any kind of dangerous or defective product, he or she should safely store the object somewhere that it will not hurt other people and allow an attorney to review the item and conduct an investigation to determine what the specific defect is.
Some of the most common kinds of manufacturing defects include:
- Unsafe dosages in prescription drugs;
- Incorrect parts used in heavy machinery;
- Improperly constructed items;
- Missing interior parts;
- Structural weaknesses;
- Faulty equipment; and
- Improperly attached components.
Liability in West Chester Manufacturing Defects Cases
Azzarello v. Black Brothers Co., 391 A.2d 1020 (Pa. 1979) was a product liability case in which the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania adopted a modified theory of strict liability under Section 402A of the Second Restatement of Torts. In Tincher v. Omega Flex, 104 A.3d 328 (Pa. 2014), however, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overruled its decision in Azzarello, concluding that a plaintiff pursuing a cause upon a theory of strict liability in tort must prove that the product is in a “defective condition” by showing either that:
- the danger is unknowable and unacceptable to the average or ordinary consumer; or
- a reasonable person would conclude that the probability and seriousness of harm caused by the product outweigh the burden or costs of taking precautions.
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania also declined to adopt the Third Restatement Torts: Products Liability § 1 utilized by many federal courts. Dean John Wade worked as reporter for more than a decade on the Second Restatement of Torts, and he offered the following a seven-factor test (often referred to as Wade factors) for determining whether a product is unreasonably dangerous for purposes of strict tort liability:
- The usefulness and desirability of the product—its utility to the user and to the public as a whole.
- The safety aspects of the product-the likelihood that it will cause injury, and the probable seriousness of the injury.
- The availability of a substitute product which would meet the same need and not be as unsafe.
- The manufacturer’s ability to eliminate the unsafe character of the product without impairing its usefulness or making it too expensive to maintain utility.
- The user’s ability to avoid danger by the exercise of care in the use of the product.
- The user’s anticipated awareness of the dangers inherent in the product and their avoidability, because of general public knowledge of the obvious condition of the product, or of the existence of suitable warnings or instructions.
- The feasibility, on the part of the manufacturer, of spreading the loss by setting the price of the product or carrying liability insurance.
In most cases involving manufacturing defects, the product liability claim will be based on one of the three following categories:
- Negligence — A manufacturer or retailer’s failure to design, build, inspect, or provide a safe product.
- Breach of Warranty — A warranty breach can either be a breach of an express warranty (a specific, tangible warranty that comes with the product) or a breach of an implied warranty (relating to products that are packaged as being free from defects even if they do not come with express warranties or a seller knows the consumer will use the product for a specific purpose).
- Strict Liability — Under strict liability, the manufacturer is held liable for a defective product, regardless of whether the manufacturer was actually negligent.
Pennsylvania Manufacturing Defects Resources
Recall List | CPSC.gov — The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is “charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction.” View a list of the most recent product recalls, including descriptions of safety issues and remedies for consumers. You can also find website and telephone contact information relating to each manufacturer.
Children Product Recalls | Latest Child Safety Recalls — Safe Kids Worldwide is a nonprofit organization working to help families and communities keep kids safe from injuries. Visit this section of the Safe Kids Worldwide website to learn about recalls relating specifically to children’s products. You can also sign up to receive recall alerts by email.
Find a Manufacturing Defects Injury Attorney in West Chester, PA
Did you sustain serious injuries or was your loved one killed by a defectively manufactured product in southeastern Pennsylvania? Make sure you contact Ciccarelli Law Offices as soon as possible.
Our personal injury lawyers in West Chester represent individuals in communities all over Lancaster County, Montgomery County, Chester County, Delaware County, and the greater Philadelphia area. You can have our attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call (610) 719-3190 or submit an online contact form to receive a free initial consultation.