Man claims he was pinned by defective forklift

Michelle Massey Feb. 10, 2010, 10:48am

MARSHALL -- While attempting to use a forklift, an Arkansas resident was suddenly hit in the stomach by the forklift's handle and was pinned against the wall.

Alleging the forklift was defectively designed, Alfred Stankiewicz Jr. filed a personal injury lawsuit against Linde Material Handling North America Corp. and GB Industrial Battery Inc. on Feb. 4 in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

The plaintiff states that on Feb. 5, 2008, he was using a Linde EW-80 forklift, in the manner in which it was intended to be used, when the handle impacted his stomach and pinned him to the wall.

Stankiewicz believes the forklift was defective and unsafe for its intended use. He alleges that the defendants allowed the defectively designed product to be sold although "it failed in its design to prevent forceful impact of its operator."

The lawsuit argues GB Industrial Battery is liable for the product failing in its design to automatically shut-off upon a forceful impact and thereby exacerbating his injuries.

The plaintiff is seeking damages for medical care and expenses, physical pain and suffering, physical impairment, loss of earnings, disfigurement, mental anguish and pre and post judgment interest.

Head-quartered in German, Linde Material Handling declares their names stands for quality and maintain that quality is reflected in their vehicles. US vehicles are manufactured at Linde Lift Truck Corporation in Summerville, S.C.

Owned by a Canadian company, GB Industrial Battery Inc.'s batteries and chargers are American made.

Nacogdoches attorneys Reese P. Andrews of Andrews and Andrews and Longview attorneys T. John Ward Jr. and Bruce Smith of Ward and Smith Law Firm are representing the plaintiff.

U.S. District Judge David Folsom has referred the case to Magistrate Judge Charles Everingham for pre-trial proceedings.

Jury trial requested.

Case No 2:10cv00044

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