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$________ FOLLOWING MEDIATION Product liability - Design defect - Finishing machine locking mechanism was defective and permitted machine to run with cover raised - The hand is crushed - Crush injury - Degloving injury to fingers and thumb.

United States District Court, District of Massachusetts

In this product liability matter, the plaintiff alleged that the finishing machine manufactured by the defendant was defectively and dangerously designed. As such, the interlock mechanism did not fix in position and permitted the machine to be used while the cover was raised, causing the plaintiff’s hand to become caught in the rollers where he suffered a crush and degloving injury. The defendant denied the allegations and maintained that the plaintiff was not properly trained in the use of the machine and was negligent in its operation, causing his own injury.

The male plaintiff, a cabinet maker, was using a finishing machine manufactured by the defendant. The machine was equipped with an interlock actuator which the plaintiff alleged failed to sit in a fixed position. As a result, the machine could be operated with the cover raised, putting the operator’s hands in dangerously close proximity to the rollers. The plaintiff was cleaning the rollers on the finishing machine when his hand was pulled into the rollers. The plaintiff’s hand became caught and was crushed. The plaintiff was diagnosed with a complex crush injury to his left hand, an open proximal phalanx fracture of his left long finger, an avulsion of the EPL tendon of his thumb, open dislocation of the IP joint of the thumb, long finger and ring finger and degloving of the plaintiff’s hand and thumb. As a result of the injuries he sustained, the plaintiff had to undergo multiple surgeries and has suffered a permanent partial loss of the use of his left hand.

The plaintiff brought suit against the defendant and alleged that the interlock actuator design was defective, dangerous and permitted the machine to be run while the cover was open. The defendant disputed the allegations of liability. The defendant maintained that the plaintiff was inadequately trained in his use of the machine and his own negligence, rather than a design defect, was the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries.

The matter was mediated and the claim was resolved for a total of $________.

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