In a U.S. District Court case involving an injured worker who alleged he sustained serious and permanent brain injuries after a fall at work, Attorneys Paul Rainville and Courtney Mayo successfully argued a motion for summary judgment on behalf of the manufacturer of a component part of the fall protection system used by the plaintiff. The plaintiff alleged that his fall protection system initially worked for about ten seconds, leaving him suspended approximately ten feet above a cement floor, but then failed causing him to strike his head on the floor. He filed an action against the manufacturer of the fall arrest equipment who then bought in the manufacturer of a metal swivel jaw assembly used in the device, alleging that a wire ring in the swivel jaw had failed during the plaintiff’s fall. Attorneys Paul Rainville and Courtney Mayo filed a Motion for Summary Judgment on behalf of the manufacturer of the swivel jaw assembly, arguing that the wire ring had not failed but appeared to have been cut. The defense further argued that the subject wire ring had been misplaced by the employer sometime after the initial inspection and, as such, no expert could perform a root cause analysis on the alleged failure of the wire ring. The defense further argued that without the use or inspection of the wire ring, the plaintiff would be unable to meet his burden to prove that the defective part caused the plaintiff’s accident. The defense asserted a Daubert challenge as to plaintiff’s liability expert on the grounds that the expert could not testify to a reasonable degree of certainty what “more probably than not” caused the incident as a result of the spoliation of evidence. Judge Zobel granted the Motion for Summary Judgment in favor of the manufacturer of the wire ring.
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