Ladder should have included warnings, suit claims

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Jan. 13, 2010, 5:49am

MARSHALL -- After falling from a ladder, a Tyler man is suing the ladder's manufacturer seeking stronger warnings or instructions regarding the product's risks.

Jonathan Davis filed suit against Bauer Corp., doing business as Bauer Ladder Corp., on Jan. 11 in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

Davis states that in the course of his employment, he was standing on a ladder when the rivets supporting the ladder broke, causing the ladder to become unstable and collapse.

Davis says he tried to prevent himself from falling, but lost his balance and crashed to the floor, pulling the ladder down with him.

The plaintiff states that the content of the warnings or instructions that accompanied the ladder were inadequate and that his injuries were caused by that inadequacy.

Davis states that the defendant failed to use due care in the manufacture and design of the ladder and failed to use proper materials reasonably suited for a ladder.

Further, the plaintiff alleges Bauer Ladder failed to use due care to test and inspect the ladder to determine its durability and function ability.

The plaintiff states he relied upon the defendant's express and implied warranty that the ladder was "of merchantable quality and was safe and fit for the purpose intended when used under ordinary conditions and in an ordinary manner."

Davis is seeking damages for medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, physical impairment and pre- and post-judgment interest.

The Bauer Corp. is self-described as "the leading manufacturer and distributor of portable ladders and related work access equipment/services for the professional markets."

On its Web site, the company states that it "warrants all Bauer Corp. manufactured products to be free from defects in material and/or workmanship. Bauer Corp. cannot be responsible for problems that are the result of normal wear, improper care, misuse or abuse of the product.

"Defect in materials and/or workmanship will be promptly corrected by replacement or repair at the option of Bauer Corp."

Currently, the company has not responded to the allegations.

Tyler attorney David E. Dobbs of the law firm Dobbs and Tittle PC is representing the plaintiff.

U.S. District Judge T. John Ward will preside over the litigation.

Case No 2:2010cv00012

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