Boy claims jack collapsed, dad sues for medical expenses

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Mar. 12, 2009, 6:18am

GALVESTON � Alleging his son was gravely hurt while using a hydraulic jack nearly a year ago, a local man is suing the device's California-based manufacturer in Galveston County District Court.

Ernesto Rivera's personal injury lawsuit against Larin Corp., which was filed on behalf of Joshua Rivera, claims the jack in question was in defective condition and fatally flawed when it was in the younger Rivera's possession on March 19, 2008.

Joshua, who was 17 at the time of the incident, recently signed on as a plaintiff.

"The plaintiffs would show that the hydraulic jack in question was so designed, manufactured, marketed, and sold by the defendant Larin Corporation that it rendered the jack unreasonably dangerous," the suit, filed on March 4, states.

The complaint says the tool suddenly and unexpectedly collapsed on the boy thus inflicting serious, permanent, and disabling injuries.

Joshua was living with his father when the jack fell on him; the elder Rivera shouldered the boy's subsequent medical expenses.

The plaintiffs fault Larin for failing to exercise ordinary care in designing and manufacturing the jack, provide adequate warnings, and properly inspect the device.

"Each and all of the above foregoing acts, both of omission and commission, were negligent and constituted negligence and were each and all a proximate cause of the occurrence in question," the suit argues.

"Accordingly, the plaintiffs maintain this suit against the defendant for all the plaintiffs' causes of action in tort, strict liability, negligence, and breach of warranty."

"The jack was in defective condition at the time it left the control of the defendant, and it reached its ultimate consumer without substantial change from the time it left Larin."

The Riveras seek restitution for physical pain and mental anguish, impairment, disfigurement, medical treatment, and losses of ability to perform household services, earning capacity, and wages.

League City attorney Kelly Forester is representing the plaintiffs, and the case has been assigned to Galveston County 212nd District Court Judge Susan Criss.

Case No. 09CV0292

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