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February 2011 Archives

Toyota still hampered by possible products liability issues

Fourteen days ago it seemed like Toyota Motor Corp. made its way out of the products liability doghouse when the United States Government announced the results of a NASA study that concluded the company's sticky accelerator issue was not created by electronic defects. Now the road to an easier street has been blocked by another round of safety recalls affecting an additional 2.17 million vehicles. Familiarly, the new recall is meant to fix mechanical problems regarding out of control accelerator pedals.

United States Supreme Court rules on products liability case

The highest court in the country, the United States Supreme Court, recently ruled on a products liability case regarding the use of lap-type seat belts in motor vehicles. In a rare unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that federal safety regulations that allowed motor vehicle manufacturers to choose the type of seat belt used in back center seats does not protect motor vehicle manufacturers from lawsuits filed by passengers injured by the use of the lap-type seat belts.

Every year thousands of babies experience crib injuries

When most parents think about putting their baby or young child in a crib or playpen thoughts of danger or accident probably do not immediately rush to their minds. Generally, cribs and playpens are thought of as safety zones that separate the child from the dangers of the outside world. However, a new study demonstrates that all cribs and playpens are not as safe as parents may think. According to a recent study and the first study of its kind, around 10,000 babies and toddlers are injured in crib accidents every year.

Parents file products liability suit against alcohol wipe manufacturer

Two parents who lost their 2-year-old son to a rare bacterial meningitis infection have filed a products liability lawsuit against a medical product supply manufacturer that produced alcohol wipes used during their son's surgery. The products liability suit claims that contaminated alcohol wipes infected their son and led to a rapid infection that caused multi-organ failure. The parents assert gross negligence against the medical product supply company, and the parents seek damages.

Safety of hot tub and pool drain covers questioned

Drain covers used for pools and hot tubs across the country have been installed despite the products' flawed safety evaluations. The drain covers are supposed to protect children and adults from getting sucked underwater by hundreds of pounds of suction force. The Consumer Protection Product Safety Commission has received complaints about the covers for years but has only recently started to investigate the predicament. The problem presents a possibly immense and not completely accounted products liability issue.

Effort to reduce fatal car accidents targets distracted pedestrians

Over the last few years, traffic safety advocates have been raising awareness about distracted driving in order to reduce the number of fatal car accidents on America's highways. Now using the same rationale, lawmakers in two states want to pass measures against distracted pedestrians. The proposed laws seek to eliminate the use of cell phones, music players and other electronics when pedestrians and other non-drivers are close to a roadway.

Defective and Dangerous Product Lawsuits on the Rise

Last year saw a record number of large product liability lawsuit verdicts. Ten of 50 of the largest product defect or dangerous product verdicts occurred last year. There were 15 verdicts of $25 million or more, according to Bloomberg online. As a comparison, there were only seven such verdicts in 2009.

Study says urban roads are safer than rural roads

According to a new study based on federal data, roads in urban areas are safer than roads in rural areas. The conclusion from the study is that where you live may determine your likelihood of getting into a fatal car accident. Rural areas still have higher rates of highway deaths even in states with low overall highway death rates. The state of Louisiana did not fare well in the study, and came in as one of the states with the highest highway death rate.

Red light cameras are saving lives and preventing accidents

While controversial to some, cameras that police intersections with stop lights save lives and prevent car accidents according to a new study released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. According to the study, in 14 of the United States' largest cities red light cameras helped save 159 lives between 2004 and 2008. The study argues that had red light cameras been installed in all large cities in the United States during the same time period, an estimated 815 lives would have been saved.

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