Allegheny County Courthouse
PITTSBURGH - A man who allegedly suffered serious injuries to his liver and abdomen when a hammerhead shattered filed a lawsuit alleging strict liability and negligence against Stanley Black & Decker Inc, the hammer's maker, in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County.
Trevor L. Whyte was using Black & Decker's Ball Peen hammer on a metal stamping tool in February 2018 when the head broke and many small pieces of metal hit his stomach unexpectedly, Whyte said in the July lawsuit.
“The hammer was dangerous and defective in light of the hammer’s inadequate and defective design that allowed the head of the hammer to break during use,” he said in the lawsuit.
Whyte suffered injuries, some permanent, including liver laceration, abdominal trauma, permanent objects inside of his liver, abdominal injury, a scar on his torso and bruises. He said the injuries weren’t all physical; he’s also experienced anxiety, emotional issues, depression and nervousness as a result of the accident, the suit says.
He said he has lost earnings and could possibly need even more surgery in the future.
“He has been and will in the future be unable to enjoy various pleasures of life that he previously enjoyed,” according to the lawsuit.
“Defendants breached their duty described above by placing into the stream of commerce a hammer that lacked adequate safety measures and was defectively designed and/or manufactured, thereby making it unreasonably dangerous and unsafe,” Whyte said in the lawsuit.
Black & Decker did not correctly construct the hammer as it was full of defective materials and didn’t include proper warnings and instructions, including the possibility of the hammer shattering, he said.
As for his negligence claim, "defendant breached its duty by negligently placing the hammer into the stream of commerce when they knew or should have known that the design and/or manufacture of the hammer was defective, dangerous and unsafe,” Whyte said.
Whyte demanded a jury trial.