Product liability case, inadequate instructions (OK Chapter of STC)

Subject: Product liability case, inadequate instructions (OK Chapter of STC)
From: LaVonna Funkhouser <lffunkhouser -at- HALNET -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 1993 15:56:23 -0600

I mentioned this STC Oklahoma chapter program on
this list back in September, but the following
write-up provides more details.

--LaVonna F. lffunkhouser -at- halnet -dot- com

Copied from October 1993 _Tieline_, p. 4

Chapter Activities: Oklahoma

Gary Lambert, OK chapter public relations committee manager and
STC senior member, reported that in September, the chapter
meeting featured guest speaker Loyal Roach. Roach was the
attorney for the plaintiff in a case regarding product liability
and a manufacturer's failure to provide adequate instructions on
the use of its product.

Roach presented a number of details involved in this case--most
of which involved the deficient design (both in construction and
in the instructions) of the Evenflo One-Step child safety seat
produced from 1980 through 1987. Between these years, there were
five million seats sold. An estimated three million are still in
use--of which one percent will be involved in some type of

As part of the presentation, Roach displayed the child seat as
well as an actual set of instructions that came with the seat
when it was purchased. Attendees were able to review these
instructions and see how misleading and inadequate they really

Throughout the instructions, the text and graphical depictions
did not coincide. In several instances, the instructions failed
specifically to explain that straps must be threaded over the
upper back bar of the child seat.

Another fault was that the seat and instructions did not have any
warnings as to the consequences of improperly strapping a child
into the seat. The only caution on the seat itself simply stated
that the consumer must follow the manufacturer's instructions.
Toward the end of the presentation, Roach displayed the most
important exhibit from the case--the mangled and contorted child
safety seat that was involved in the accident.

If you are interested in contacting Mr. Roach, contact our
chapter PR manager, Gary Lambert, at 918/481-7305.


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