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Shapiro & Appleton

Virginia (VA) Product Liability Case Awards $20 Million to Paralyzed Woman

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Driving on Interstate 64 in Virginia Beach or Norfolk can be challenging at times when debris from unsecured loads end up on the roadway.  It was this type of situation that caused a Roanoke Virginia driver to swerve off the road to avoid colliding with a half deflated swimming pool that had just fell off of a pickup truck.  The victim suffered terrible injuries that have left her paralyzed from the chest down. 

Recently a Roanoke, Virginia (VA) jury awarded that woman $20 million dollars in compensation for a product liability verdict against Mazda Motor Corp.  The victim’s lawsuit asserted that her 1995 Miata convertible was defectively designed in a way that caused the windshield to collapse after the car flipped and came to a rest on its roof.

At the time, the canvas top on the convertible was closed, and the victim was not speeding or driving recklessly in any way, according to her lawsuit.  Because of the “unreasonably dangerous” design of the car, a latch system that was supposed to hold the windshield to the convertible top failed when the car came to a rest upside down. 

As Virginia (VA) personal injury lawyers we are often asked, “What is a design defect?”  In a products liability case, a “design defect” is a problem or condition a product has that causes injury to someone who uses the product. A design defect is a problem with the product’s design that makes the product inherently dangerous or useless, even if it is manufactured perfectly and made of the best-quality materials. 

Naturally, manufacturers and sellers of consumer products typically defend these suits by arguing that there is simply nothing wrong with the product so there is a great deal of research required in order to gather the legal evidence that will convince an insurance company as well as the seller/manufacturer that a substantial settlement should be paid.  This is why hiring an experienced Virginia (VA) personal injury lawyer can make all the difference

CT

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