Improper Installation or Service
Often, a defective product interacts with some kind of installation or service that enhances the danger or causes the danger to become disastrous. For example, a defective safety relief valve on a propane tank functioned for several years until the tank was negligently overfilled. Only then was the relief valve called upon to perform its function, and the resulting explosion proved it was not up to the task.
This kind of combination of factors and responsible parties is quite common. Another example is a paddleboat that was provided to guests at a dude ranch. The boat was known to take on water, yet the ranch owner continued to make it available to guests, ultimately resulting in a double drowning. When the boat was disassembled, it was apparent that the reason it took on water was because of a manufacturing flaw.
Products or components can also be damaged or altered during installation or maintenance, causing an underlying defect to manifest itself. Components that might be reasonably safe in some circumstances can become dangerous if used in different applications.
Under Colorado law, a party who is sued is allowed to attempt to pass the blame to an absent party. That makes it important, whenever possible, to identify and include as a defendant any party whose actions contributed to the condition of the product. Sometimes responsibility extends even to the party who made the defective product available for use or determined how it would be used.
Whenever the defect in the product is the inadequacy of some kind of a safety device, the event that triggered the need for the safety device to work is the negligence of some other party.
Jim Cederberg has handled many cases that involved complex issues of interaction between product defects, component defects and the negligence of others involved in the condition or use of the product. Our Boulder defective products attorney knows how to analyze the relationship between the product and the role of others in order to protect your rights.