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Products liability case filed by ex-firefighter in Pennsylvania

A former Pennsylvania firefighter has commenced a products liability lawsuit regarding a safety mask manufactured for firefighters. He claims the mask did not work as it was supposed to while he was on-the-job fighting a fire. The products liability suit is against three companies manufacture and/or distribution of the particular mask.

The plaintiff asserts that he was fighting a fire in a city building and the seal of the mask he was wearing malfunctioned. The failure of the faulty equipment caused him to inhale dangerous amounts of smoke. He sustained a number of injuries from the smoke inhalation, among them being muscle weakness, memory loss, and different types of lung problems.

The compensation amount the former firefighter is seeking is over $50,000. That amount -- should his civil, claim be successful -- will be used to help cover his legal fees, extensive medical bills, and lost income. His wife is also asking for loss of consortium. He is accusing the three companies of negligence in making and distributing the product, as well as failure to apply appropriate warning labels on the product.

According to the suit, one of the companies named as a defendant claims that it conducted tests and made repairs to the mask a few months before the incident. At least one of the named defendants is petitioning to have the case removed from state to federal court. The reason cited is that the former firefighter is asking for an amount more than the state maximum and also because the company is actually based in Maryland.

Products liability cases can become complicated. For any Pennsylvania resident who feels he or she has a case such as this one, the best course of action is to gain an understanding of their rights under our laws.. Hopefully, lawsuits like this one will ultimately lead to more extensive testing on safety equipment to keep injuries like this one from happening to other firefighters.

Source: The Pennsylvania Record, "Ex-Philly firefighter who suffered near-fatal smoke inhalation sues makers of protection mask," Jon Campisi, July 3, 2013

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