When you buy an item from the store, particularly one that is mechanical, you should feel confident that the product is safe to use. If manufacturers follow a product design while making their products, the product will likely work as you expect. It is when a manufacturing defect occurs that your product may cause unexpected injury.
Manufacturing defects are just one of different ways a product can become defective. You may wonder how likely you are to encounter this type of defect. FindLaw provides some background into manufacturing defects which may help you to understand if these defects are truly common.
How manufacturing defects occur
A manufacturing defect is not a design defect. A design defect results from a problem inherent in the design. As a result, the manufacturing process will spread that defect to every product in production. By contrast, a manufacturing defect occurs when a manufacturer omits, deviates or otherwise changes part of the design when making a single product. As a result, only a small number of products will experience this kind of defect.
Correcting for manufacturing defects
Manufacturing facilities generally have procedures in place to monitor production and stop issues that cause a defect in making a product. This further limits the number of defective units on the market. Even if a manufacturer does produce a defective item, a facility may still discover the hazardous product and replace it before it goes out on the market.
Manufacturing defects still happen
In spite of safeguards used by production facilities, manufacturing defects still get out into stores. So, while uncommon, you or another unwary customer may buy a product without knowing that it contains defects that could be potentially dangerous.
If you do suffer injury from a manufacturing defect, be aware that a manufacturer or the party responsible for the product may try to make it hard to prove that you suffered injury on account of their negligence. Certain doctrines like the malfunctioning doctrine may assist you in a manufacturing defect case.