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Proposed settlement reached in Remington dangerous products suit

Some Montana consumer product injuries occur when a user fails to follow instructions or heed label warnings. All consumers are at risk when a manufacturer makes a defective product. In some cases, profit-minded manufacturers know about and hide product flaws, but do nothing to correct the defect or safeguard the public until consumers take legal action.

Several class action lawsuits have been brought against the maker of the Remington 700 Series Bolt-Action Rifle. Plaintiffs claim millions of the Remington firearms contain a faulty Walker Fire Control mechanism. Model 700 owners stated the rifles fire spontaneously, without anyone pulling the trigger.

The Remington Arms Co. recently agreed to a settlement in one of the federal lawsuits. The complaint alleged a Remington Model 700 rifle, purchased by the plaintiff in 2000, fired three times without the user engaging the trigger – once when the firearm’s bolt was opened and twice during the release of the safety. The gun owner accused the firearms manufacturer of knowing since 1979 the rifles’ trigger mechanisms were dangerously defective.

The lawsuit sought a declaration that Remington rifles with Walker Fire Control mechanisms were defective. The legal action requested a Model 700 rifle recall, compensatory and additional punitive damages. No details accompanied the announcement of the settlement, which must have a court’s approval.

A Montana man is watching the developments of the case carefully. His 9-year-old son died in 2000, after being struck by a bullet from a Remington rifle. The gun fired accidentally when the boy’s mother released the safety to unload the gun, prompting the grieving father to conduct his own investigation into the gun maker and the trigger mechanism -- the father said his long investigation would end with a settlement approval. Defective products endanger all consumers. It’s often victims who endure the greatest pain and suffering from dangerous products who rally together to make sure other consumers are safe.

Source: The Montana Standard, "Remington to settle class-action lawsuits over rifle’s trigger mechanism; recall in the works?" Mike Dennison, July 7, 2014

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