South-Western Legal Studies in Business

Decision about Alleged Product Defect and Link to Injury for Jury to Decide
Description Appeals court held that a plaintiff had provided sufficient basis for a product defect suit to proceed against the maker of a child car seat. Whether the seat failed to properly protect the child in an accident was a matter that properly should be submitted to the jury to determine.
Topic Torts
Key Words Products Liability; Design Defect
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Eighteen-month old Dylan Edic was injured in a car accident despite being in his child restrain system (CRS). His parents sued Century, the maker of the CRS, for product defect. The district court judge held that the Edics had not provided sufficient evidence that the CRS enhanced Dylan's injuries and that they had failed to provide sufficient evidence to permit an inference of manufacturing defect. The Edics appealed.
Decision

Reversed. Under Florida law, the issue of whether a side-impact collision at 40 miles per hour constituted normal use of a CRS, as required to support an inference of product defect, was for the jury to determine. A product is defective in design when the foreseeable risks of harm posed by the product could have been reduced or avoided by the adoption of a reasonable alternative design and its omission renders the product not reasonably safe. The Edics had testimony from qualified experts that the jury should be allowed to review to decide the case.

Citation Edic v. Century Products Co., 364 F.3d 1276 (11th Cir., 2004)

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