Electric drill design case dismissal upheld
In Hershey v. Black & Decker, the Court of Appeals upheld the trial court's refusal to allow the jury to decide the Plaintiff's defective design case. The Plaintiff had argued that the Defendant's electric drill was unsafe because it did not incorporate a second, stabilizing, handle to reduce torque on the user's wrist and elbow. Since the Plaintif's expert could not prove the extent to which this torque is responsible for injury--or quantify the risk of injury resulting from the use of a less-safe design--the Defendant's directed verdict was upheld on appeal. The trial court refused to allow Plaintiff's expert to offer his opinion that the lack of a stabilizing handle was the cause of Plaintiff's injury, judging that it was based on inadequate scientific research.