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Farmers should understand strict product liability in Illinois

On Behalf of | Aug 9, 2017 | Personal injury

The equipment that farmers use can be very dangerous. Farmers don’t head out to the fields with the intention of being harmed by the equipment, but it does happen sometimes. The injuries in these cases are often very serious, if not fatal.

In 2015, there were 401 deaths of farm workers and farmers, notes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This equates to around 19.2 deaths for every 100,000 workers. Each one of those fatalities led to a family not having their loved one come home from work.

When farm equipment is to blame

There are sometimes issues with work-related machinery that can cause fatalities or injuries. In some of these cases, the machinery was being used as intended and with all instructions being complied with. This means that there might have been a defect in the equipment.

As you can imagine, a piece of farm equipment that has one defective component can be disastrous. For example, if a brake on a combine fails, there is a chance that workers who are in front of it might be run over. This could mean painful injuries or death to those workers.

After the injury

The most important thing to do after the injury occurs is to get the medical care that you need. Often, this is going to require emergency services to stabilize you and transport you to the hospital. It might mean that you need an airlift to a trauma center.

As you find out what injuries you have suffered and get a treatment plan together with your medical team, you need to think about what this means for your life. Find out if your injuries will heal or if you will have to learn how to handle normal daily activities in a different manner. At this point, you might decide that you are going to seek compensation since you shouldn’t be liable for the financial impact of the injury.

Recovering damages

The issue then becomes whom to hold liable for the damages that were suffered. This could be the equipment manufacturer, designer or seller, depending on the circumstances. This is one of the important factors in your case.

In Illinois, the concept of strict liability applies in these cases. This means that there doesn’t have to be negligence or purposeful intent to harm. Instead, you have to show that the piece of equipment did cause you harm. Other elements must also be included in your case, so make sure that you understand what points are important. This can help as you seek compensation for medical bills and other expenses that you incur due to the injuries.