Breaking News: Man buys $600 saw, injures self, sues over lack of features included in $1600 saw.
Although you cannot see it, I am rolling my eyes and sighing dramatically.
Following a recent lawsuit where an injured man won a settlement against Ryobi, a Chicago man is now suing Bosch over injuries inflicted while using a Bosch table saw…
In the Ryobi suit, the plaintiff claimed that Ryobi was at fault for his injuries and for not including SawStop-like flesh detection technologies in the saw. Somehow the court ignored the fact that the plaintiff purchased a bargain priced saw and removed the blade guard and rip fence before cutting his hand, yet they still awarded him $1.5 million!
Bosch is going to have to defend itself against allegations that they were aware of technological advances such as blade guards and flesh-detection SawStop-styled blade brakes, and that they colluded with their competitors… to keep those alternatives off the market.
If the plaintiff wanted a saw with a flesh-detection blade-brake, why didn’t he buy the SawStop contractor saw instead? His injuries happened in September 2008, months after SawStop introduced its smaller contractor saw, so availability wasn’t an issue. Surely the $1000 different in price between this saw and the Bosch he chose or already owned couldn’t have played a part in his decision.
It is possible that at the time the plaintiff was not aware of the SawStop contractor saw, and that if he had been he would have purchased one which could have prevented his injuries. Then again, we don’t yet know what caused his injuries, and whether they were largely caused by personal carelessness or negligence as in the Ryobi case.
What next, lawsuits against drill press manufacturers for not having safety measures that detect when a user decides not to clamp down a workpiece? Suits against hammer manufacturers for not featuring thumb-detection airbag safety measures?
Seriously… what ever happened to personal responsibility? Granted bargain-priced tools like the Ryobi saw aren’t exactly high quality, but they’re still usually relatively safe. Newer Bosch table saws feature quality blade guards and riving knives, and even older models appear to be quite safe. While accidents happen, injuries can be largely minimized or avoided by using common sense and proper safety accessories such as push blocks and sticks.