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Product liability laws are designed to protect consumers from damage or harm from products. Areas of liability can include personal injury, property damage and warrantee breaches. Manufactures of products can be held accountable for design and manufacturing defects, failure to warn and other types of negligence. One typically associates liability with the design and manufacturing of the product, but what about shipping damage?
What if a product appears to operate correctly after shipping, but incurred “undetectable” damage. Damage could be caused by shock, temperature extremes and water. What if a product failed to operate correctly and resulted in property damage, or worse.
The issue is an interesting one because the first question would be; who is liable; the shipping company, the packaging company or the manufacturer?
Since we are not legal experts, we are not going to address that question, but liability mitigation may require that adequate care was taken in transporting the product. If a product is susceptible to temperature extremes, moisture or shock, then the manufacturer needs to ensure that the product is adequately packaged and transported and even inspected or tested after shipping. Some of these steps could include using shipping and handling monitors to warn when packages encountered conditions that would reduce the reliability of the product. Packnet supplies a large range of monitoring products that can help minimize the possibility of damage and capture specific information during the transport of a product, giving the manufacturer a higher level of confidence about the integrality of the product after shipping.