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What is considered an insufficient warning on a product?


It is natural to think that products such as common household goods and personal products are safe for consumers. Everyday, consumers purchase, use and consume various goods without fear of being harmed by the product. But even when a product is not inherently dangerous or harmful, warning labels serve to ensure safe usage and help to avoid harm to consumers. But what happens if a warning label is not suitable and how is suitability determined?

In order to understand what constitutes an insufficient warning on a product, one must first understand what manufacturers are required to do. Specifically, there are two duties that must be carried out by manufactures when creating warning labels for their products. First, manufacturers must warn consumers of any hidden dangers that might be present in a product. Second, manufacturers must instruct consumers how to use a product safely.

When a warning label is used, it must be both clear and specific. Moreover, it should be placed in a location where consumers are able to easily find it. Lastly, consumers should be able to understand the warning, and proper symbols should be used to help communicate the warning.

Although warning labels are used to ensure the safety and proper use of products, not all products require them. Despite that, many chose to include them regardless if the company is required to include a warning or not.

Additionally, there are certain cases when a warning label is required. If the products present dangers to consumers, a warning is required. If the manufacturer is aware of any dangers, a warning label must be used. If a danger exists when the product is reasonably used in its intended manner, then a warning is required. Lastly, if the dangers a product presents is not obvious to a reasonable consumer, then a warning label is required.

Whether a product is considered a dangerous product or not, a consumer could be injured by a product. If a manufacturer fails to adequately warn consumers of the dangers of the product,, an injured consumer could file a products liability claim. This could help the injured victims recover compensation for their losses and damages.

Source: Injury.findlaw.com, "Defects in Warnings," accessed June 1, 2015

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