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Product Liability: Defective Manufacture vs. Defective Design

As consumers, we should not have to worry that we could be injured by the products that we have picked up directly off of the shelf. Unfortunately, this is a reality that we must be wary of. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), there were approximately 212,000 emergency room visits in 2002 alone that were related to the use of dangerous and/or defective toys. This statistic may seem shocking to some, but what’s worse is that this figure only accounts for a small percentage of the product-related injuries that are suffered each year in the US.

When factoring the countless other products that may pose a threat to consumers—including industrial machinery, auto parts, electronics, medications, etc.—that number dramatically increases. So how, as consumers, can we ensure that we are kept safe from dangerous or defective products?

One of the most important steps that any wrongfully injured consumer can take is to pursue a civil lawsuit against the negligent maker. Not only will this allow them to pursue compensation for the harm that they have suffered, but it will call attention to the problem at hand. Defective products are released onto the market at an astounding rate, and one of the only viable ways for consumers to fight back is to hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions. In order to do so, however, one must be able to prove one of two theories: defective manufacture or defective design.

“Defective manufacture” refers to the idea that a product is dangerous because of the way that it was assembled, rather than the way it was originally designed. “Defective design” refers to the idea that the design engineers produced an inherently dangerous product and/or failed to take consumer safety into consideration.

Either theory will provide a plaintiff with justifiable grounds to pursue damages, as long as they can provide sufficient evidence to support their allegations. In order to ensure that a lawsuit of this nature is handled successfully, however, it is highly recommended that the injured party involve an experienced lawyer. Not only will a legal professional be able to thoroughly investigate the evidence involved in a case, but they understand what steps they will need to take to support their argument—whether it is based on the theory of defective manufacture or defective design.

For this reason, if you believe that you have a valid case to make against the makers of a dangerous product, you should not hesitate to consult with a Raleigh personal injury attorney at Whitley Law Firm. Our firm has a wealth of experience in regard to products liability, so we encourage you to tell us about your case as soon as possible.