Nail Gun Injuries and Litigation Increasing Every Year

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Nail Gun Injuries Defective Products

Nail Gun Injuries and Litigation Increasing Every Year

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that there were 37,000 nail gun injuries requiring emergency room treatment every year from 2001 to 2005. That number, along with the number of lawsuits filed, is increasing every year to the products’ popularity. But are nail guns safe?
Nail guns are dangerous
That’s what consumer advocate groups claim. They point to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) 2007 report which shows that there was an average of 37,000 nail gun injuries per year from 2001 to 2005 that required victims to obtain treatment in emergency rooms. The CPSC reported that the number of injuries continues to rise with the popularity of nail guns. In fact, their research found that the number of injuries between 2004 and 2005 alone increased 39 percent – causing the CPSC to conclude that, “additional measures are needed to prevent nail-gun injuries among both workers and consumers.”
Two types of guns available to consumers
There are basically two types of nail guns available to all adult consumers – one that allows for the rapid firing of nails (some reports claim 30 nails per minute) and a second that only allows a single nail to be fired at a time. It is the former that is the most dangerous according to the CPSC, which provided the following overview of each type of nail gun:
Rapid firing. The most common type of firing mechanism is the dual-action contact- trip trigger, which requires that the manual trigger and nose contact element both be depressed for a nail to be discharged. When users depress the manual trigger, they can rapidly fire a nail (i.e., “bounce nail”) each time the nail-gun nose contacts the work material, speeding up production. Trigger locks and other user modifications that keep the trigger constantly depressed or that disable the nose contact switch have been used to make rapid nailing easier, but this counteracts the safety features of the dual-action contact-trip mechanism.
One at a time. Another type of firing mechanism, the alternative sequential-trip trigger, requires the nose contact to be depressed before the manual trigger, rather than simultaneously with the trigger, to discharge a nail, making unintentional discharge of nails less likely.
The findings of the CPSC’s study are published on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.
Increased injuries lead to increased litigation
Litigation stemming from nail gun injuries is also increasing and hefty jury awards and settlements have been making the headlines. The most recent was a Massachusetts jury that awarded a nail gun victim $3.4 million in December 2007. His gun backfired and forced a 3 ½ nail through his cheek and into his brain and leaving him partially paralyzed.
If you’ve been injured by a nail gun, contact an attorney to discuss your situation. Consultations are free, without obligation and strictly confidential. Contact an experienced attorney whose practice focuses in this area of law.

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