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$4 Million Recovery for Defect in Construction Equipment

In a confidential settlement arrived at shortly before the case was to start trial, attorneys Alan M. Feldman and Daniel J. Mann obtained a $4 million settlement* for a heavy equipment operator and his wife. The substantial recovery was brought about by exhaustive pretrial depositions and discovery, which established that the accident causing plaintiff’s injuries resulted from a defect in the product.

The action involved a 28-year-old operator of a large piece of construction equipment known as a trac or rock drill, manufactured by one of the country’s largest producers of such equipment. As the plaintiff was moving the trac drill to another location at the site, the feed table of the equipment, which contained a 20-foot drill steel, suddenly collapsed onto the plaintiff, who suffered serious crush injuries, multiple fractures and permanent damage to his bladder.

Immediately after they were asked to represent the injured plaintiff in this action, Feldman Shepherd attorneys Feldman and Mann began a comprehensive investigation. The rock drill was secured, and engineers and metallurgists were retained to carefully inspect the equipment. It was ultimately determined that the collapse of the feed table was directly caused by a defect in the pivot pin supporting the feed table. This defect, consisting of a failure to properly cast the pin at the time it was manufactured, was identified as the cause of the catastrophic failure which brought about the plaintiff’s severe injuries. Feldman and Mann traveled to Texas to take testimony from the defendant’s own engineers, and completed many additional depositions to further support their case. Feldman Shepherd was also able to obtain critical documents suggesting that other casting defects had been known to the defendant, and had been the cause of other equipment failures.

The identities of all parties remains confidential by agreement.

*Attorneys Feldman and Mann handled this case on a pro hac vice basis, which is when lawyers not licensed in a particular state associate with a lawyer who is licensed in that state and obtain the court’s permission to jointly represent a client in a specific matter.