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United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
August 21, 2001, Submitted ; October 26, 2001, Filed
[*684] LAY, Circuit Judge.
In December 1997, Fred Lauzon, a carpenter, was injured while using Senco Products, Inc. ("Senco") bottom-fire pneumatic nailer, model SN2 ("SN2"). Lauzon brought suit for negligence, breach of warranty, manufacturing defect, and design defect against Senco for injuries that arose out of the use of the SN2.
The design of the bottom-fire pneumatic nailer enables it to drive nails by two different means. First, it can drive a single nail when the trigger and the bottom contact point are depressed. Second, it can rapid-fire nails when the operator depresses and holds the trigger and bounces the bottom contact point off the surface of the work. Senco markets the bottom-fire [**2] pneumatic nailer for the second manner of use, the rapid-fire mode.
Senco produces a second type of pneumatic nailer, a sequential-fire tool. It drives nails only one way, when the bottom contact element is depressed and the trigger is subsequently pulled. Unlike the bottom-fire pneumatic nailer, the trigger of the sequential-fire tool must be released and squeezed each time the user seeks to fire a nail.
Lauzon was using the SN2 to roof a garage. He was lying on the edge of the roof while securing a fourteen-foot 2 x 6 to the roof sheathing. His left hand was supporting the 2 x 6 under the overhang and his right hand was holding the SN2. A fellow workman, Steve Nelson, was standing on a ladder underneath supporting the 2 x 6 Lauzon was attempting to secure.
Lauzon testified that he properly drove a nail and as the SN2 recoiled, two more nails were driven, the second one entering his hand. Lauzon acknowledges his finger was on the trigger, it being constantly depressed as he was employing the bottom-fire pneumatic nailer in its rapid-fire mode. Yet, he contends the SN2 should not have fired successive nails because the bottom contact point was not depressed, since it was four to [**3] five inches above the roof sheathing. Lauzon testified it was not possible that the bottom contact point came into contact with the sheathing because it would have shot the nails into the wood and not his thumb. However, he was uncertain of all the details because "it happened so fast, it was -- it was like, wow, what -- what happened you know."
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270 F.3d 681 *; 2001 U.S. App. LEXIS 22941 **; 57 Fed. R. Evid. Serv. (Callaghan) 1452; CCH Prod. Liab. Rep. P16,194
Fred Lauzon, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Senco Products, Inc., Defendant-Appellee.
Prior History: [**1] Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota.
Lauzon v. Senco Prods., 123 F. Supp. 2d 510, 2000 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18350 (D. Minn. 2000)
Disposition: Reversed and remanded.
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Civil Procedure, Summary Judgment, Hearings, General Overview, Evidence, Admissibility, Expert Witnesses, Daubert Standard, Appeals, Standards of Review, Abuse of Discretion, Scientific Evidence, Standards for Admissibility, Testimony, Expert Witnesses, Ultimate Issue, Types of Evidence, Helpfulness