Baseball is a classic American past-time, many enthusiast and athletes use batting cages to practice or as a form of exercise. However, every year people are injured in batting cages. Whether it is from defective pitching machines, lack of safety equipment or some other reason. Often times these injuries can be serious. Particularly if improper or inadequate safety equipment is provided or when the automatic pitching machine is not properly calibrated. In each instance operators can be held liable. If you have been injured in a batting cage, contact a product defect attorney from the Downtown L.A. Law Group for a free consultation.
Who can be held Liable for My Injuries
One of the most common questions is who is liable? Liability can depend on a number of different factors. If the injuries resulted from a safety issue i.e. inadequate sports safety equipment, the operator of the facility can be held liable. Generally the most applicable theory would be negligence.
An operator would be considered negligent when they fail to provide adequate safety or protective gear. Negligence is defined as a substandard level of conduct, outside the normal level of care. Thus, if other batting cage operations provide protective gear and where the injury took place does not, then it is an inference of negligence.
If the injury was caused from a defective pitching machine, or gear, then it can be a product liability claim. Unlike a negligence claim a defective product claim does not require a showing of negligence. In such cases liability can be imposed on manufacturers, retailers and owners of the product.
Another possible theory can be premises liability. Customers are considered invitees and are owed a special duty of care. This duty of care requires that the property owner inspect the property for all known and unknown dangers on the property. They are required or charged with the duty to inspect the property for such dangers. A defective pitching machine can be considered a defective condition, thus exposing the landlord to liability for injuries.
Defective Pitching Machine
A defective pitching machine can cause catastrophic injuries. These machines dispense baseballs at high velocities. When these machines are not calibrated to stop at a specific time or if they do not dispense in a proper fashion then they can be considered defective. A product can be defective either by design, through a manufacturing defect or inadequate labeling.
Design defects apply when the product is defective from its inception. This usually applies when the prototype which the product is designed from is defective. Additionally design defects apply to all products from the similar design. Manufacturing defects are those that exist as a result of some type of issue during the manufacturing process. Inadequate labeling issues exist when manufacturers fail to warn of a potential defect with regards to the product. Each of these theories can apply with regards to determining whether or not a product is defective.
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Common injuries can include the following: