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$300,000 Settlement for Wire Processing Machine Injury

Boltz v. Megomat USA

Case Synopsis:

The plaintiff, a 47 year old machine operator, suffered a fracture of her right distal finger while operating a wire processing machine.  The machine, which was manufactured by defendants, cut and stripped wires, then placed brass terminals at the end of the stripped wires with a stamping press.  On the date of the plaintiff’s hand injury accident the plaintiff noticed that the terminal stamping press was producing wires without terminal brass ends.  Plaintiff stated that she turned off the automated wire processing equipment and rotated the stamping press away from the wire processing unit in order to determine what had caused the press to stop operating correctly.  Plaintiff believed that she had turned the power off to the stamping press but it was ultimately determined that she must have accidentally left the power on.  Plaintiff then placed her hand at the point of operation of the press in order to realign the terminal rail.  At that point the press cycled through a stroke and crushed plaintiff’s right index finger between the upper and lower die. As a result of the machine accident plaintiff had multiple surgeries to attempt to repair the finger; however, plaintiff developed a painful neuroma on the finger which required her finger to be amputated.

The plaintiff filed a hand injury lawsuit against Megomat Company, the manufacturer of the wire processing machine. The wire processing machine was defective as designed because the machine did not contain a guard for the point of operation when the machine was operating in manual mode.   Despite defendants claim that such a guard was unnecessary, after the accident defendant installed a lock out bar on the terminal press between the upper and lower dies that prevented the press from cycling even if the power to the press was unexpectedly left on.

Outcome:

The defective machinery case settled on the eve of trial for $300,000.  The case was handled by Philadelphia products liability attorney,  Richard M. Jurewicz, of Galfand Berger. For more information on this case, call Galfand Berger at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) or contact the firm online.