5 Types of Product Defects (And What to Do If You Have Suffered from One)

When we purchase or use a product, we expect the product to operate safely. Unfortunately, however, this does not always happen. Whether due to a production error or sheer negligence, defective products find their way into consumers’ hands every day.

Get informed on five common defects and what you can do if you have been harmed by a dangerous product.

What Responsibilities Do Manufacturers Have?

Under product liability law, manufacturers have a legal responsibility to send safe products to the market. There are several facets of this duty. Namely, manufacturers must design, produce, and market products in a way that protects consumers from danger or warns them of any potential danger.

If a manufacturer fails in any one of these key duties, they may be held liable for any injuries that result from the use of their dangerous product. Below, we discuss five types of products that often contain dangerous defects:

#1. Electronic Devices

Electronic devices have become part of our daily lives. Indeed, it’s difficult to imagine functioning without them. Given how prevalent electronic devices are in our lives, it’s vital these products are designed, manufactured, and marketed safely.

However, electronic devices are often subject to product recalls. The devices most commonly subject to defects and subsequent recalls include:

  • Computers and laptops
  • Smartphones
  • Tablets
  • Monitors
  • Power adapters and batteries
  • Charging devices
  • Video game consoles

One specific example of a dangerous electronic device in recent years is the infamous Samsung exploding phone. The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 had to be recalled globally after the device’s batteries had a tendency to overheat and catch fire. After a thorough investigation, it was later discovered that there was not enough room between the devices’ batteries and internals. This caused electrodes inside each battery to crimp, weaken the separator between electrodes, and lead to short-circuiting.

This discovery was not made and addressed before several consumers were injured and the phone was banned from domestic flights.

#2. Medical Devices

Medical devices are some of the most important products manufactured today, as they are used on or in the human body. Any defect associated with medical devices can have disastrous consequences. Sadly, these defects happen at an unacceptably high rate.

The following medical device defects are just a few of the many we have examined in our practice:

  • Essure birth control: The Essure birth control implant is a small metal device intended to cause permanent sterilization in women by blocking the fallopian tubes. Although Essure birth control was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002, federal regulations have failed to prevent recipients of this device from being harmed by it. In fact, there are currently about 30,000 reported cases of illness, injury, and death resulting from the Essure birth control implant.
  • DePuy hip replacement: Our firm is currently investigating cases regarding defective hip replacements manufactured by DePuy Orthopedics, Inc. Several patients who have received this device have experienced pain, mobility issues, and the need for revision surgery.
  • Stryker hip replacement: DePuy is not the only manufacturer in hot water over hip replacement devices. Another manufacturer, Stryker, recalled its hip replacement system in 2012 after thousands of patients complained of adverse reactions including metallosis.

#3. Automotive Parts

Automotive parts are another type of product that must be designed, manufactured, and marketed properly in order to prevent injury or death. This is because the products in the automotive sphere are often used in potentially life or death situations, such as traveling at fast speeds on the freeway or driving through heavily populated areas.

Automotive parts most often subject to recalls include:

  • Airbags
  • Seatbelts
  • Tires
  • Brakes

#4. Heavy Equipment

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), approximately 100 workers die on the job every week. This number is most prevalent in industrial work. One key reason for this is the dangerous machinery that industrial workers handle on a daily basis. Industrial workers rely on this equipment to be safe and functional. When this does not happen, these workers can be seriously injured or killed.

Common machinery that experiences dangerous defects include:

  • Cranes
  • Forklifts
  • Conveyor belts
  • Bulldozers
  • Trenchers
  • Boring and driving machines

#5. Home Appliances

Unfortunately, dangerous products often exist in the place we least expect them: our home. There are many appliances in the home that could pose significant risks to household members if they are designed, manufactured, or marketed negligently.

Often, it is heat-producing appliances that pose the greatest risk. These appliances include:

  • Ovens and stoves
  • Heaters and radiators
  • Fireplaces
  • Dryers
  • Irons

Since these appliances can be dangerous not only if they are produced incorrectly, but also if they are installed incorrectly, there may be several different parties that could be held liable for an injury resulting from the use of an appliance.

Injured by a Dangerous Product? Contact Us Today

If you or someone you love has been injured by a dangerous product, our Sacramento personal injury attorneys are here to help. We have the experience and resources needed to identify any and all liable parties in a product liability claim and help you recover the compensation you deserve.

Call Kershaw Talley Barlow at (916) 520-6639 to schedule a free consultation.

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