Tag: product liability lawsuit

How to Sue for Lawn Mower Injuries

Lawn mower injuries can be a surefire sign of spring. As soon as the flowers start blooming and the birds start singing, your grass starts growing, too. That leads to the annual firing up of the lawn mower for the first grass cutting of the season.

More than 35,000 Americans get hurt while mowing their laws each year. Most of these injuries happen when a mower’s feet contact a powered mower’s blades. Mowing while wearing flipflops or other open-toed shoes can increase the likelihood of this happening.

Many law mower injuries happen because of operator error. Others may happen because of a defective product or another person’s negligence. When the later occurs, you may be able to sue for your lawn mower injuries.

Defective product or operator error?

When a lawn mower causes a serious injury, the first question might be whether the mower was defective. Consumers who end up with lemons can file a product liability claim if their injuries were caused by a defective mower. There are two questions to ask when determining if the mower was functioning as intended.

  1. Did the mower malfunction?
    Lawn mower manufacturers design their products with safety in mind. Most mowers come with explicit instructions on how to operate them to safeguard your well-being. Consumers who follow the safety instructions and still become injured through no fault of their own should explore whether the mower malfunctioned. If so, they may be able to file a product liability claim against the manufacturer.
  2. Was the mower poorly designed?
    Sometimes a lawn mower’s design can contribute to injuries. Let’s say your mower comes with a foot guard that’s supposed to protect your feet from the mower’s blades during operation. The guard doesn’t work as intended, and you end up with significant injuries to your feet. In this case, the product designer may be at fault.
  3. Did operator error cause your injuries?
    Sometimes people are injured by lawn mowers they aren’t operating. How can this be possible? Well, let’s say you’re out for a leisurely walk through your neighborhood, when you get hit by a flying rock from your neighbor’s mower. If your neighbor had his mower’s deck turned toward the sidewalk, he can be at fault for your injuries.
Mowing in your bare feet is a recipe for disaster and can lead to some serious foot injuries.

What are some common lawn mower injuries?

Powered lawn mowers make yard work much easier. They may be useful, but they also can cause some serious injuries. Here are a few of the most common lawn mower injuries that happen each mowing season across the U.S.

  • Broken or fractured bones can happen if you try to mow while the grass is wet, and you slip and fall.
  • Burns are another way you can get injured. Powered lawn mowers get hot during operation. Accidentally touching the hood or other areas can cause serious burns.
  • Crushing body injuries can happen any time you operate a lawn mower. You could become trapped under the mower if it tips over, causing the crushing injuries.
  • Cuts and dismemberment can happen if you get your hands or your feet too close to the lawn mower’s blades while in operation. You can even cut yourself on the blades when the mower is turned off if you’re not careful.
  • Eye injuries can happen when the mower’s blades pick up debris (such as rocks) and throw them back at you. Wearing goggles while mowing can prevent eye injuries.

What steps do you take when injured?

Whether it’s a small cut or a broken bone, law mower injuries require immediate medical attention. Even small scrapes and abrasions can become infected without proper treatment. Going to your family doctor or the emergency room, if necessary, ensures you get the care you need. It also is the most effective way to document your injuries if you decide to move forward with a product liability or personal injury lawsuit.

After you receive treatment for your injuries, the next step is to consult with an experienced product liability or personal injury attorney. Bill Russell has the experience and knowledge to assist with your case. Call 505-218-7844 or contact Bill online to request a consultation.

When Your Favorite Product Hurts You

Beds, clothing, and even your favorite flat-screen television can injure you when you least expect it. Most consumers do not think about the products they use every day causing them harm. Yet nearly 11 million people have received emergency room treatment because of injuries from consumer products. When your favorite product hurts you, there is recourse. Reaching out to a personal injury lawyer skilled in product liability can ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

What is product liability?

Product liability is the legal term used to describe the responsibility of distributors, manufacturers, and sellers of defective items. While accidents can and do happen with any consumer product, manufacturers must follow certain standards designed to help prevent injuries and even deaths from normal use of their products.

Any product can become the target of a personal injury lawsuit. It could be a piece of furniture with a design flaw prone to breaking during normal use, or clothing that does not meet the federal flammability standards. Sometimes it takes a personal injury lawsuit to prompt a product recall. Other times, the product already was recalled and ended up in the hands of the consumer anyway.

Buyers have legal protections when products are determined to be unreasonably dangerous. While no federal product liability laws exist, each state has its own rules. In New Mexico, distributors and manufacturers are liable for defective products that cause injuries to consumers when negligence can be proven.

Steps to take after a faulty product injury

Consumers who are harmed by faulty products must be proactive in seeking out assistance to improve their chances of receiving compensation for their injuries. Following these recommended steps can help strengthen your case against product distributors and manufacturers.

  1. Seek medical care for your injuries
    There are two reasons to seek immediate medical treatment for injuries caused by defective items. First, to ensure you receive appropriate treatment for the type of physical harm caused by the product. Second, to document those injuries for later use in a personal injury lawsuit. Medical records are essential components to any successful personal injury complaint, especially one that involves product liability.
  2. Check for a recall
    Some product recalls receive a lot of attention. You hear about them on the news, through social media, and even from signs posted in the retails locations where the products are sold. Others may not garner as much awareness. One of the best sources for checking on product recalls is the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The commission posts information on its website about all recalls, including those that have not managed to make the 6 o’clock news. Consumers can search by date, category, type of hazard, and manufacturing origin. If the product that caused your injuries is the subject of a recall, you can export the data from the commission and add it to your evidence for a potential personal injury claim against the distributor or manufacturer.
  3. Seek legal counsel
    Determining liability for faulty products is an important step when considering a personal injury lawsuit. Personal injury attorneys experienced with product liability can guide you through the process to ensure your rights are protected. One of the first things your personal injury lawyer will do is check to see if a class-action lawsuit for the item already has been filed. If one exists, you can consider joining it. There are pros and cons to joining a class-action lawsuit. Your attorney can discuss these with you before you decide whether to join one or file an individual claim.
  4. Identify all responsible parties
    As previously mentioned, this is where hiring a personal injury attorney skilled in product liability law comes in handy. Experienced product liability attorneys can follow the distribution chain to identify all responsible parties. From designers and manufacturers to retail distributors and wholesalers, each plays a unique role in getting a product to market. Some entities may have more responsibility for your injuries than others depending on why the product is defective. Your attorney can determine if some or all the parties involved should be included in the personal injury claim.
  5. Gather supporting documentation
    Another perk of hiring an experienced product liability law attorney is they will provide direction on which kinds of records can help prove your case. Receipts, product registration numbers, warranty information, and medical documentation of your injuries are just a few of the items that can point to liability.

Knowing when to settle

Most personal injury lawsuits never make it inside a courtroom, including those for product liability. Settling outside of court can be a beneficial experience for victims when they work with a reputable and skilled personal injury attorney. They can receive appropriate compensation for their injuries and other damages while being spared the stress of a lengthy court case. The product liability law experts at Cameron & Russell protects your rights while seeking the best route for recovering fair compensation. Schedule your free case evaluation today to get started.

Surprising Ways Holiday Gifts Can Hurt You

‘Tis the season for gift-giving. People spend time carefully choosing the perfect gift for their family and friends, excited to see their faces when they open them. Sometimes those well-intentioned gifts cause serious injuries to loved ones. No one wants to spend their holiday in the emergency room, but that is exactly what can happen under the right circumstances. Here are some of the ways holiday gifts can hurt you and how to avoid a disaster.

You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out!

Anyone who has ever seen the 1980s holiday classic A Christmas Story knows exactly what those iconic words mean. While it was amusing to watch a fictional Ralphie find out the hard way that his coveted Christmas gift was an accident waiting to happen, such happenstances are not so funny when they happen in real life.  

If you buy a loved one a Red Ryder BB gun or any other type of air-powered gun like Ralphie had in that movie, make sure they understand the dangers associated with their gift. Air weapons have evolved since the 1980s, making their penetration power like that of conventional handguns. They can cause serious injuries and should never be given to anyone too irresponsible to handle them safely.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) said 71 percent of air gun injuries were unintentional and caused an average 3-day hospital stay for injured parties. Of those, at least 66 percent caused permanent injuries. Some of the most common ways air guns and other pellet guns can injure users include:

  • Eye injuries can cause permanent partial vision loss or blindness. They most frequently happen when air guns backfire and hit the user in the eye. ‘
  • Skin lacerations and punctures are another common injury with these types of guns. Pellets and BBs can travel at speeds exceeding 200 mph and become embedded in the skin.
  • Bacterial Infections in areas of the body hit by BBs and pellets, especially when the skin is lacerated.

Removing secure packaging

A surprising number of people injure themselves each year not with the gifts they receive, but with their packaging. Dubbed “wrap rage” by industry experts, it happens when someone has difficulty removing poorly-packaged or overly secure product packaging. To cut down on waste and make products harder to tamper with on the shelves, many manufacturers have optimized their product packaging designs.

It is not the packaging itself that causes the injuries. Rather, it is what people do out of desperation trying to get them open. One of the most popular solutions is to grab boxcutters, a knife, scissors, or another sharp tool to pry the product free. What often ends up happening is an injury that requires a trip to the emergency room for stitches. If you are unlucky enough to sever tendons or ligaments with that sharp object, you might need surgery to repair the damage.

Frustration-free packaging can help prevent these kinds of injuries. If you bought or received a gift that sent you into a fit of wrap rage this holiday season, consider reaching out to the product manufacturer with feedback about your frustrations. If they care about customer satisfaction, they may work with a product packaging engineer to improve the unpackaging experience.

Toys with small parts can pose a choking hazard for little ones.

Choking on toys

Choking on toys has been a risk for as long as children’s toys have existed. Extra vigilance at the holidays is necessary since children receive numerous gifts from well-meaning family and friends who may not realize they have purchased something dangerous. Parents and other adults who buy gifts for little ones should follow product age recommendations to help reduce the risk. Some other guidelines to keep in mind to help keep children safe from choking this holiday season:

  • Check all toys for loose parts or components that can easily break off and end up in a child’s mouth.
  • Read warning labels and pay particular attention to any instructions about choking hazards and how to avoid them.
  • Keep toys that can be a choking hazard away from younger siblings. This can include games with coins, marbles, and small balls.

Don’t be afraid to say no to holiday gifts that can hurt you

Never be afraid to say no to a gift request if you know it will pose a danger to the recipient. The same holds true for gifts you or your family members receive from others. If you do get injured by a faulty product, you have recourse. Reach out to us to learn how we can help.

Call Cameron & Russell for a Free Case Evaluation

Bill Russell and Marcus Cameron are the faces behind Cameron & Russell. We go the extra mile for our clients to pursue personal injury claims and provide criminal defense. We approach every case with a fresh eye to detail and the determination to represent our clients to the fullest extent the law allows. We passionately defend clients facing criminal charges, and relentlessly seek out fair compensation for personal injury claims. No matter your situation, we promise to tirelessly represent your legal needs. 

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