Madison - St. Clair Record

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Vermeer denies lability in hammermill operator’s suit

By Heather Isringhausen Gvillo | Aug 16, 2016

Vermeer Manufacturing claims a hammermill operator assumed the risks of using a grinder when he was allegedly injured after the deflector shield blew down.

Plaintiff Robert Howard filed his lawsuit on June 17 against Vermeer Manufacturing Company, doing business as Vermeer Corporation, Vermeer Midwest, Vermeer Sales & Services MI, Inc. and Vermeer Texas-Louisiana.

In his complaint, Howard claims he was changing the teeth of a Vermeer HG8000 horizontal grinder on March 22 when a gust of wind blew the defector shield down, causing it to hit the top of his head and crack his hard hat. He alleges he suffered serious injuries as a result of the incident.

Howard claims the defendants failed to properly test the component of the deflector shield, failed to include proper instructions, failed to detect the defect in the product and failed to provide adequate warnings.

Vermeer Manufacturing answered the complaint on July 28 through attorney Matthew Champlin of HeplerBroom in Edwardsville.

The defendant filed six affirmative defenses against the plaintiff, arguing that he assumed the risk of injuries he allegedly sustained or his alleged damages were caused by misuse, abuse, alteration or modification of the machine.

Howard seeks a judgment of more than $50,000.

He is represented by D. Todd Mathews and Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian & Associates in Edwardsville.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 16-L-853

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