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What Are the Most Common Examples of Defective Products?

What Are the Most Common Examples of Defective Products?

Santa Ana defective products attorneyEvery year, thousands of people are injured by defective or dangerous products. From vehicles to appliances to medications, when products malfunction or are designed unsafely, the consequences for consumers can be serious. Product liability laws allow those harmed by defective products to seek justice and compensation.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury from a faulty product, speak with an experienced Santa Ana defective products attorney who can protect your rights and fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.

Schedule a Free Initial Consultation Today!

Types of Product Defects

Before diving into some of the most common examples of defective products, let’s explain the different product defects that can give rise to liability claims:

Design Defects

Design defects are a type of product defect that can make an item dangerous to use, even if made exactly according to the design plans. This means that no matter how carefully they manufacture the product, it will still have an unreasonable risk of harming consumers.

In these cases, the problem is with the design itself. The product may have an inherently unsafe design or lack important safety features that could have prevented injuries.

For example, a car design that makes the vehicle prone to rolling over, a toy designed with small parts that can cause choking, or a piece of furniture that is unstable and likely to tip over can all have design defects.

When a product has a design defect, every product line unit will generally have the same defect and pose the same risks to consumers. This differs from a manufacturing defect, which may only affect some product units.

Proving a design defect typically requires showing that the product’s design was unreasonably dangerous, that a safer alternative design was feasible, and that the defective design caused the plaintiff’s injuries.

Experienced product liability attorneys often work with engineering and product design experts to build strong cases and hold manufacturers accountable for unsafe designs.

If a design defect injures you, speak with a lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal rights and options for seeking compensation.

Manufacturing Defects

Manufacturing defects are another product defect that can lead to serious consumer injuries. Unlike design defects, which are present in the product’s plans, manufacturing defects occur during the production process. This means a product may have a safe design, but an error or defect during manufacturing makes it hazardous.

Manufacturing defects can occur in various ways. For example, a mistake on the assembly line can result in a product missing a key component, a contaminant can get into a batch of medication, or a weak or substandard material can be used to construct the product. The result deviates from its intended design in a way that endangers consumers.

Manufacturing defects often only affect some product units, not the entire product line. The challenge is figuring out how many products have the defect and getting them off the market before they hurt more people.

To prove a manufacturing defect case, you generally need to show that the product varied from its intended design, that the defect made the product unreasonably dangerous, and that the defect caused your injuries.

This often requires a careful investigation into the product’s manufacturing process and history. An experienced product liability lawyer can gather the necessary evidence to build your case.

If you suspect a manufacturing defect caused your injuries, preserve the product in its current condition, if possible, and speak to an attorney immediately. You may recover compensation for your medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Warning and Labeling Defects

The third main type of product defect is known as a warning or labeling defect. This happens when a product has inherent risks that consumers may not notice, and the manufacturer fails to provide adequate warnings or instructions about those risks and how to avoid them.

Manufacturers have a legal duty to provide clear, understandable warnings about the potential hazards associated with their products and how to use them safely. This includes warning labels, instruction manuals, safety data sheets for chemicals, and other types of consumer information.

When manufacturers don’t provide this information – or they provide inadequate warnings – the product can become unreasonably dangerous to users.

Some examples of warning and labeling defects include medications that don’t disclose all potential side effects, cleaning products that don’t adequately explain the risk of chemical burns, power tools that don’t warn about the risk of electrocution, and foods that don’t disclose common allergens.

In a warning defect case, the key issues are often whether the product had risks that required a warning, whether the warnings provided adequately alerted consumers to the danger, and whether the lack of proper warnings caused the plaintiff’s injuries.

Manufacturers often argue that the risk was obvious or the plaintiff misused the product. An experienced product liability attorney can counter these defenses and fight for your rights.

Don’t hesitate to get legal advice if you’ve suffered injuries or illness because of a product that lacked proper warnings. You may recover compensation, and a skilled attorney can work to hold the negligent manufacturer accountable.

Common Examples of Defective Products

Defective Products Liability

Now let’s look at some of the products most commonly involved in defective product liability claims:

Motor Vehicles

Vehicles and auto parts are some of the most frequent sources of product liability lawsuits.

Common defects include:

  • Faulty brakes, tires, steering systems
  • Defective airbags that deploy improperly or not at all
  • Seat belts that malfunction
  • Poorly designed fuel systems prone to fires/explosions
  • SUVs/trucks prone to rollover accidents
  • Motorcycles with unsafe designs or parts

When vehicle defects cause accidents and injuries, victims may have claims against the manufacturer, parts suppliers, and others in the distribution chain. An attorney can identify all potentially liable parties.

Medical Devices

Patients rely on medical devices to improve their health and save their lives. However, defective medical devices can cause devastating harm.

Examples include:

  • Defective joint replacements
  • Malfunctioning pacemakers or defibrillators
  • Unsafe surgical mesh or hernia patches
  • Dangerous birth control devices/implants
  • Defective ventilators and breathing machines

Victims of defective medical devices often need extensive medical treatment and may be left with permanent injuries or disabilities.

Dangerous Drugs

Pharmaceutical companies must ensure their medications are safe and properly tested. But all too often, dangerous drugs make it to market.

Common examples include:

  • Medications with dangerous side effects
  • Drugs with inadequate testing or safety warnings
  • Contaminated or counterfeit medications
  • Medications that negatively interact with other drugs

Dangerous drug claims are complex, often involving powerful pharmaceutical companies. Having an experienced attorney is advised for taking on these difficult cases.

Children’s Products

Parents expect the products they buy to be safe for their children. Tragically, defective kids’ products cause thousands of child injuries every year.

Examples include:

  • Dangerous/defective car seats and booster seats
  • Unsafe cribs, strollers, high chairs
  • Toys with small parts that pose choking hazards
  • Children’s clothing/sleepwear not fire-resistant
  • Kids jewelry containing toxic materials

If an unsafe product harmed your child, you need an attorney who will fight to hold the negligent companies accountable and get your family justice.

Household Appliances

From kitchen gadgets to cleaning tools to yard equipment, we use appliances and tools in our homes every day. Defects in these products can lead to electrocutions, fires, lacerations, and other injuries.

Examples include:

  • Defective space heaters or electric blankets
  • Unsafe power tools or lawnmowers
  • Malfunctioning ovens or stoves
  • Dangerous blenders, toasters, microwaves
  • Faulty smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors

Product liability claims involving household appliances and equipment can be challenging. The product’s age and maintenance history may be factors. An experienced attorney can assess your case and advise you of your rights.

Industrial/Workplace Equipment

Industrial workers rely on various heavy machinery and equipment to do their jobs. When this equipment is defective, the results can be catastrophic workplace accidents and injuries.

Examples include:

  • Malfunctioning forklifts, cranes, hoists
  • Defective scaffolding or ladders
  • Unsafe power presses or machinery
  • Dangerous conveyor belts or assembly lines
  • Malfunctioning safety switches or shut-off valves

Injured workers may have claims against the equipment manufacturers. An attorney can determine all of your options for compensation.

Food Products

We assume that the foods we purchase from stores and restaurants are safe to consume. However, contaminated or mislabeled foods cause illnesses and injuries to countless people each year.

Examples include:

  • Food containing dangerous bacteria like E. coli or Listeria
  • Mislabeled foods that fail to disclose allergens
  • Foods with foreign objects like glass or plastic
  • Baby formula contaminated with dangerous chemicals

If you suspect a defective food product caused your illness, report it immediately and contact an attorney to discuss a potential claim against the negligent companies.

Damages in Defective Product Cases

Those harmed by dangerous and defective products may recover compensation for damages such as:

  • Past and future medical bills
  • Lost income and diminished earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Wrongful death of a family member

An experienced product liability attorney can calculate the full extent of your damages and fight for the maximum recovery. In some egregious cases, punitive damages may punish the negligent manufacturer.

Proving a Product Liability Claim

Product liability claims are complicated, requiring extensive evidence about the product’s development, manufacturing, and safety history.

In general, you must prove:

  • The product was defective and unreasonably dangerous
  • The defect caused your injuries
  • You were using the product as intended

Proving these elements often requires expert testimony in product design, engineering, and safety. An experienced attorney will have access to the experts needed to build your case and the resources to take on the well-funded product manufacturers and their insurers.

Time Limits for Filing Claims

Filing Claims

It’s important to know that strict time limits called statutes of limitations apply to defective product claims. If you miss the deadline for filing a claim, you can lose your right to compensation forever. That’s why it’s best to speak with a defective products lawyer as soon as possible after an injury occurs. An attorney can ensure all filing deadlines and procedural requirements are met in your case.

What to Do if a Defective Product Injures You

If you suspect a defective product caused your injuries, to protect your health and legal rights:

  • Seek prompt medical attention for your injuries. Follow all of your doctor’s treatment recommendations.
  • Stop using the product right away. Preserve it in a safe place, unaltered if possible.
  • Gather any documentation about the product, such as receipts, warranty information, instruction manuals, and product packaging.
  • Document your injuries with photographs and keep detailed notes about your symptoms, medical appointments, and how your injuries have affected your life.
  • Contact an experienced defective products attorney as soon as possible to discuss your rights and legal options.

Choosing the Right Defective Products Attorney

Defective product claims are high-stakes matters requiring significant legal experience and resources.

When choosing an attorney to handle your case, look for:

  • Extensive experience successfully handling product liability claims
  • A track record of significant settlements and verdicts
  • The ability to take cases to trial when necessary
  • Access to expert witnesses and cutting-edge technology
  • Personalized attention and responsive communication

The right defective products lawyer will have the skills, experience, and dedication to take on the powerful product manufacturers and fight for the full compensation you deserve.

If an Unsafe Product Harms You, You Have Rights

Dangerous and defective products cause devastating injuries and losses for victims and families. If an unsafe product harms you, you have important legal rights.

Pursuing a product liability claim can compensate you for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. Holding negligent manufacturers accountable also helps prevent others from being injured by the product in the future.

Don’t wait to get the legal representation you need. Contact an experienced defective products attorney for a free consultation to discuss your case. The sooner you have a knowledgeable lawyer fighting for you, the better you will protect your rights.