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What makes a product defective?

Newscasters often announce consumer product recalls during their nightly telecast. You may also receive notification of one while surfing the internet, or the company who produced it may send you a letter in the mail alerting you of the recall. 

Three different kinds of defects may result in product recalls and injuries to consumers: They’re either manufacturing defects, defects of design or defective warnings (or some combination of the three).

What are design defects?

Most times, a product’s designer and manufacturer aren’t the same — and a design is defective whenever it poses an unreasonable risk of injury during ordinary use. For example, if a crockpot explodes while in use because the seal on the lid wasn’t designed to fit properly, that would be a design defect.

What are manufacturing defects?

Manufacturing defects are related to problems that occur during the actual production of an item. For example, if a manufacturer swapped out a cheaper seal on a crockpot lid for the one that was supposed to be there, that would be a manufacturing defect.

What are defective warnings?

Marketers have an obligation to label products carefully, in ways that mitigate the potential for danger. If a product doesn’t give a reasonable warning about any dangers the product may pose, that’s a defect. For example, if a crockpot doesn’t have instructions that tell a consumer how to use it safely and doesn’t warn about the danger of an explosion if the lid isn’t properly secured, that could be a defective warning. 

Determining whether you have a valid products liability claim

Countless products injure or kill consumers each year. While some consumers hold designers, manufacturers or marketers accountable for their negligence, too many victims chalk their injuries up to an unfortunate event. You do yourself and others a disservice by doing that. 

An attorney can advise you why you should hold a negligent party liable for their oversight and help you understand more.

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