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Hunting tree stands recalled

Those injured by a defective consumer product can face the same challenges as any victim of a personal injury accident.

Recently, a company named River's Edge, in cooperation with The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, recalled its tree stands used by hunters. Due to potential product liability issues, in cases when the snap-hook assembly can fail, the product has been recalled. If this occurs, the tree stand, and any occupant, will fall to the ground.

There have been several reports of the product failing and one included injuries related to a broken toe and lacerated hand. CPSC has stated that it is still interested in receiving accident or injury reports related to this product.

In a products liability case, the injured party asserts that the manufacturer of a product should be liable for personal injuries related to a defect in the product. There can be, however, many possible defendants in a products liability case when a victim is injured.

These include parties within the distribution chain of the defective product. They can be the product manufacturer, the manufacturer of component parts used in the product, a party who assembles or installs the product, the wholesaler and the retail store that sold the defective product to the injured consumer.

Today, any person that could have been foreseeably injured by the defective product has a claim against one of the possible defendants.

For the defendant to face liability, however, the sale of the product must occur in the party's ordinary course of business, thus eliminating liability for an individual who resold the product at a garage sale (it is, however, illegal to attempt to resell a recalled consumer product). The product that caused injury must be defective and the defect must have made the product unreasonably dangerous.

For those injured by a defective consumer product, compensation for injures that result, including medical expenses, lost earnings and pain and suffering, may be available. Product liability claims exist to protect consumers and help compensate them when they are injured.

Source: News from CPSC, "Rivers Edge Recalls Hunters Tree Stands due to Fall Hazard," Oct. 24, 2012

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