On May 4, 2014, a single steel clamp suspending a chandelier-like piece of circus equipment failed, causing eight performers to plummet to the ground, according to officials investigating the Providence, Rhode Island circus accident.
Failed Clamp Causes Circus Accident
As of May 5, 2014, eight performers were still hospitalized while two remained in critical condition. According to authorities, the circus accident was caused by an allegedly defective steel carabiner clamp, which was the sole support of the welded steel rigging. The investigator for the Providence Fire Department stated that it was not immediately clear why the carabiner failed, as its use appeared to be within acceptable weight limits during the performance.
Although the five-inch long carabiner was designed to hold up to 10,000 pounds, far more than the 1,500 pounds it held at the time of the circus accident, movement of the performers or of the rig could have potentially increased the force on the carabiner. Feld Entertainment, owner of the Ringling Bros circus, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) stated they were still investigating the cause of the collapse.
The acrobats fell roughly 40 feet to the ground, hurting one performer on the floor and stunning the audience of 3,900, many of whom were unsure if the drop was part of the show. It is expected that an OSHA investigation will determine whether or not the carabiner was to blame or if there were any violations of workplace safety standards in connection with the circus accident.
What is Product Liability?
When a person has sustained injuries due to an allegedly defective product or device, he or she may have legal recourse against the manufacturer or supplier of that product. A product may be anything from medical or industrial equipment to a car or household appliance. Those who have been injured by defective products may consider working with a product liability attorney to file a lawsuit and seek compensation if it can be proven that the injuries sustained were directly caused by fault on the part of the manufacturer.
A product liability attorney can help injured parties pursue claims and recover damages for past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost income, disfigurement or scarring and other conditions. In specific cases, a plaintiff may be able to recover punitive damages, so it is important to seek legal counsel from a product liability attorney to make sure you understand your rights and what compensation you are able to seek.
Contact a Product Liability Attorney Today
If you or a loved one sustained an injury due to a product that you feel was defectively designed or manufactured, contact Attorney Group to receive your free, no-obligation consultation. We can evaluate your case, help determine if you have a claim and connect you with a product liability attorney who can help you seek the compensation to which you may be entitled. The time to file is often limited, so it is important to seek legal counsel as soon as you feel you may have a case.