Any injury to the brain can cause catastrophic and life altering damages. In order to protect our brains, we wear helmets during sporting or recreational activities such as, football, hockey, baseball, skateboarding, roller blading, skiing, snowboarding, or bicycle, motorcycle or horseback riding. We are under the impression that helmets are supposed to keep our brains safe and protected from a head injury. Unfortunately, faulty designs, defective parts, inadequate materials, and reused helmets can cause significant brain or spinal cord damage. When a helmet fails to provide adequate protection, it can lead to traumatic brain injuries (TBI), brain hemorrhages, skull fractures, severe concussions, spinal cord injuries, paralysis, paraplegia, quadriplegia and death.
Helmet Performance Failure Risks to Athletes
Mark Daniels, a young football player, was awarded $1,500,000 by a Texas jury after he suffered massive head and brain injuries during a football practice when his helmet collided with a teammate’s. The jury found that Rawlings, the large helmet company who made the product, manufactured the product defectively and failed to warn Daniels that it would not protect him against certain types of brain injuries. Another young high school football player, James Arnold, suffered a fractured spine, which caused permanent paraplegia and respirator or breathing tube dependence, when he collided head first with an opposing player while trying to recover a fumble. Riddell, the helmet company that also supplies the NFL with helmets, was found to have manufactured the helmet defectively and failed to warn Arnold and other consumers that it did not protect against certain neck injuries. The jury awarded Arnold over $12 million in damages.
Helmet Wear or Damage
What many people are unaware of is that almost every school, university, or community sports teams use the reconditioning process or re-use the same helmets over and over again for years. During the reconditioning process, the helmets are inspected for signs of damage or wear such as cracks, dents, chipped paint and padding wear. If any signs of wear or damage are detected, the helmets are sent to a reconditioning plant for repairs. The helmets that pass inspection are then sent back to the schools or sports teams for use during the next season. However, many times different replacement parts are used that lead to an unsafe helmet.
How Can Helmets Have Design Defects?
Sometimes, a helmet can have a design flaw or was manufactured improperly and thus, inherently dangerous from the start. Common design defects in helmets include a thin shell on the exterior of the helmet unable to withstand blunt force and cracking on impact, inadequate padding on the interior unable to absorb a blow to the head, or a defective chin strap, fastener, buckle, or snap that may result in the helmet coming off the head prior to impact. In addition, while a company may design a helmet properly, it may not take the time, care and money to ensure that the parts they use work properly and are not defective. In order to be sold, motorcycle helmets must meet the minimum safety requirements laid out by the Department of Transportation. Despite the fact that this standard is only a minimum one and is not difficult to meet, many helmets do not meet those safety standards and are still sold to consumers.
Because a consumer who buys a helmet of any kind assumes that it will protect them in the case of any violent collision or accident, helmets must contain adequate warnings of any dangers that the product will not protect against. Because you rely upon a helmet to keep you safe when participating in potentially dangerous activities like playing football or riding a motorcycle that you would not partake in without such protection, you have a right to be properly warned of the helmet’s limitations.
Justice for Catastrophically Injured Consumers
If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, skull fracture, spinal cord injury, paraplegia, quadriplegia, or other devastating injury following a helmet failure, the Beasley Pennsylvania helmet failure lawyers are here to help you. We will help you obtain compensation for the thousands of dollars in medical expenses you have been forced to pay, the income you have lost from not being able to work and the severe pain and suffering you have endured as a result of the careless behavior of the company who defectively designed or manufactured your helmet. We believe that these manufacturers should be held accountable for taking their customers’ money while failing to take the time to provide them with a safe product and failing to protect them from permanent brain injury, paralysis, or even death.
Since 1958, the legendary Philadelphia product liability and wrongful death lawyers of The Beasley Firm have been awarded in excess of $2 billion dollars and have sustained hundreds of verdicts, settlements, and awards in excess of $1 million dollars. Our record of success speaks for itself. If you or a loved one has been wrongfully injured or killed due to a faulty helmet, please contact one of our experienced Pennsylvania defective helmet lawyers at 1-(888) 823-5291. As always, we offer a zero fee guarantee which means that if we don’t make a recovery on your behalf, you don’t owe us a dime. We always offer a free, no obligation consultation.