Personal Injury Case Results – Product Liability
Defective Toy Design; $792,000
The 12-year-old plaintiff was playing with a toy projectile manufactured by the defendant toy company. While using the toy with a friend, the projectile “fired”, striking the plaintiff in his left eye, resulting in retinal damage. Surgery was performed to reattach the retina but due to a build-up of scar tissue, the operation failed. Additional surgeries were performed, unsuccessfully, leaving the plaintiff legally blind. The product liability lawyers of Parker Scheer argued that the manufacturer of the toy was negligent in design in that it could cause serious injuries if not used with all its component parts.
Defective Manufacturing Machine; $200,000 cash payment in addition to $120,000 in Worker’s Compensation Benefits.
The plaintiff suffered injuries to his back and hip after a commercial manufacturing machine malfunctioned. Plaintiff’s lawyers, Parker Scheer was prepared to demonstrate that the machine, as designed, manufactured, and/or constructed, was defective in several respects, including negligent design, failure to warn of potential risks, and insufficient guarding.
Negligent Installation of Hand Control System; $1.3 Million
The plaintiff, a 62-year-old operating room nurse, was killed, and her 37-year-old son was seriously injured, when her mini-van suddenly accelerated and crashed into a nearby brick wall. The plaintiff operator, a double, below-the-knee amputee, was operating her van by way of hand controls which had been installed by the defendant only months earlier. Following nearly two years of intensive investigation and analysis of the hand-control system, Parker | Scheer was prepared to demonstrate that the hand controls, as designed, manufactured and/or installed, were defective and were the cause of the crash. Parker | Scheer obtained a combined settlement of approximately one million dollars. A claim against the hand control manufacturer is currently pending.
Defective Citronella Candle – Burn to Leg; $80,000
The plaintiff, a 62-year-old woman, suffered second-degree burns to the calf of her left leg after hotshot from a defective citronella torch candle. Parker | Scheer investigated the manufacturer and determined that the subject candle was defective and had been the subject of a prior manufacturer’s recall. The plaintiff’s incident-related medical bills totaled $1,500. The case settled as a result of telephone negotiations.
Fractured Wrist; $125,000
The plaintiff, a 40-year-old Salvadoran woman, was employed as a bakery worker at a commercial bakery in Chelsea, Massachusetts. At the time of the incident, the plaintiff was one of several operators of a large, commercial bakery dough-processing machine, designed to produce bread products for wholesale distribution. While in the course of her duties, the plaintiff attempted to remove some dough scraps that had accumulated beside the conveyer belt. With her arm extended, the plaintiff’s cloth glove was suddenly snagged by the protruding teeth of an unguarded, rotating lock-washer. As the lock-washer rotated, it drew the plaintiff’s gloved-hand into the motorized mechanism, severing the distal phalanx of her right ring finger. In addition, the plaintiff suffered a deep laceration of the dorsal aspect of her right forearm. The plaintiff contended that the defendant, a French corporation, was negligent in failing to guard the rotating lock-washer so as to protect workers from contact with the lock-washer’s rotating teeth. The plaintiff was prepared to prove that as an alternative to a “star” lock-washer-given its name for its star-like protruding teeth-an “internal toothed” lock-washer would have eliminated the hazard without impacting the machine’s functionally. Finally, the plaintiff contended that the defendant’s employee/installer, who had traveled from France to Massachusetts to install the machine, failed to bend the protruding teeth of the star lock-washer, downward, in accordance with the machine’s design specifications, resulting in the hazard. The case was settled prior to trial.
Tainted Intravenous Pharmaceutical Compounds; $200,000
Two male plaintiffs underwent intravenous infusion of a chemical compound manufactured by the defendant pharmaceutical manufacturer, under the care of a Boston physician and nurse. The subject compound administered to the plaintiffs, referred to as “Chelation Therapy,” consisted of four (4) ingredients, individually labeled in separate “multi-use” vials as “Vitamin A,” “Amino Acids,” “Mineral Complex,” and “Extracts.” Shortly after receiving the administration of their chelation therapy, the plaintiffs each reported experiencing dizziness, sweats, fever, and severe nausea. Over the next 24-48 hours, the plaintiffs presented to different hospitals with symptoms ultimately confirmed as blood-born Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus), an infectious bacterium that had been introduced to both plaintiffs during their respective chelation treatments. As a direct result of their infection, both plaintiffs were forced to undergo lengthy intravenous antibiotic treatment and suffered a range of continuing deficits including knee pain and weakness caused by the settling of the infection in the plaintiff’s joints, and fatigue. The plaintiffs reached a settlement with the defendant manufacturer of $200,000 and claims against the defendant physician and nurse are pending.
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