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  • Courts, Government and Sawstop

    There seems to be increasing movement to mandate flesh sensing technology on all table saws.

    The Osorio verdict was upheld by a US Court of Appeals.

    Last week the US Consumer Product Safety Commission voted unanimously to propose a new table saw safety standard, specifically an advanced notice for proposed rule making. That is (as I understand it) the next step to mandating flesh sensing technology on table saws.

    Interesting considering the CPSC recent (March 2011) stated opposition to a mandate for a technology based rule.

  • #2
    Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

    I read the link to the appeal you posted. Each time one of these lawsuits goes through the court it adds another precedent case in the books that lawyers can use against the next company.

    Table saws have been around for at least 70 years, consumer versions since the late 50's early 60's. I learned how to use a table saw when I was in eighth grade wood shop in the early 70's. Back then there were no safety gates etc... the only safety options you had, were (1) the brain between your ears, (2) safety glasses, (3) a push stick for tight cuts.

    Its amazing that the inventor of Saw Stop is know the definitive expert witness to table saw injuries. Pathetic. What ever happened to common sense?

    Telling a manufacture there product is designed poorly, even though it has safety guards in place is nuts.

    So if I go out and buy a new Bentley Continental Supersport, that sports 621 hp, and I drive the thing over 200 mph and crash, can I go back and sue Bentley because they should have had safety features built into the car to protect me from foolish high speed driving?

    Suits like this are just one more nail in the coffin of American Business, and another feather in the cap of big brothers quest to tell us all how to live our life because were to stupid to do it ourselves.
    Last edited by Watersurgeon; 10-13-2011, 12:12 AM.

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    • #3
      Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

      How many accidents happen with circular saws over table saws? I know tons of carpenters who are missing fingers or have cuts in their legs from a skilsaw getting out of control. I know alot less people who got into fights with table saws (1).
      We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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      • #4
        Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

        I believe I have read that the owner of SawStop is a lawyer.

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        • #5
          Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

          Originally posted by Abbott View Post
          I believe I have read that the owner of SawStop is a lawyer.
          Steve Gass invented the sawstop technology and is a part owner in the company. He is a patent attorney and has a PhD in physics.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

            I am all for safety and innovation, but I do not want it forced up on us, (and I want to choose the levels of safety I work under).

            If it would be/or does become come mandated, that some type of saw stop is required for ever new saw, I wonder if the public will appreciate having to spend an extra $500 or so dollars for that safety feature,
            and wonder what happened to the to the cost of the saws, that last year was only $200 to $250 that a inverted skill saw on a table is a $750 tool, (and then if the saw is that expensive, why even build a cheap home owners saw), I bet most saws would start at a $1000 bill,

            The technology is out there, let free market forces drive the need, not lawyers, and Government mandates.

            I would think as a school and even many a business, the saw stop would be the only choice out there for the exposed liability.
            ( was in Home depot one day, and the radial arm saw had so many "extra" safeties" build up and on it I really did not see how it was even useful as a saw any more) and if it keeps going tools will be so cumbersome with gadgets to keep one safe that they will be unusable for the most part) similar to the drawing below,

            then what happens is that they start to disable the safeties to use the tool and sooner or later getting into trouble,

            but one can not protect from stupid
            Attached Files
            Last edited by BHD; 10-13-2011, 01:59 PM.
            Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
            "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
            attributed to Samuel Johnson
            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
            PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

              This is great news, in the near future I will likely be able to use any number of power tools without any requirement for a brain!

              I still want to see sawstop make a video with the wiener strapped to the backside of the cut and have it kick back through the blade - real world style - bet there is more than a knick in the dog!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                This is one reason I bought the Unisaw when I did earlier this year. I saw the handwriting on the wall and as you all know I am opposed to sawstop being forced on every saw made the way that it is being done.

                So even though my TS-3650 has many good years left in it I sold it and bought the Unisaw. Looking back I should have kept the 3650 and lugged in down in the basement and started a indoor shop. That is/was a great saw and I miss it even with the beautiful Unisaw sitting in my shop.
                ---------------
                Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                ---------------
                “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                ---------
                "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                ---------
                sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

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                • #9
                  Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                  A couple of items for those who may be interested.

                  Chairman of CPSC statement -- He doesn't seem very impressed with PTI's efforts to increase saw safety.

                  This one longer, but is the ANPR.

                  Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking -- It starts at the bottom of the first page.

                  I wonder where some of this information comes from. They make the statement that 31% of the blade contact injuries happened when the blade guard was IN place. That I find odd.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                    Originally posted by Watersurgeon View Post

                    So if I go out and buy a new Bentley Continental Supersport, that sports 621 hp, and I drive the thing over 200 mph and crash, can I go back and sue Bentley because they should have had safety features built into the car to protect me from foolish high speed driving?
                    At this rate we may be deciding if we buy the Bentley or the table saw since they will cost the same.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                      one of the things I think could be done to make table saws safer, is a more table behind the blade,
                      I have a old contractors table saw and the distance or table behind the blade is only a few inches of table behind the blade,

                      on my old contractors saw, it had about 8 to 9 inches of table behind the blade, and I feel that using the small saw is much more dangerous as one has to put so much more pressure to keep the wood down and in place on the smaller saw, as the large saw helps support the lumber, where the smaller saw one has to force the lumber through the last few inches of cut, as there is no support on the rear of the saw,
                      (I do not know what is being done today, but that makes a big difference on some cuts and safety is simply the table size and the amount behind the blade
                      Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                      attributed to Samuel Johnson
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                        One of the things that I think will curb this kind of stupid legislation is to have the jurys of such trials made up of one's "peers". In other words, the jury or a review of this case before it ever went to trial should have been made up of experienced table saw users, instead of people who obviously had no experience whatsoever with power tools and only saw this poor fellow as a poor and very stupid victim hurt by a big company with deep pockets. They didn't see that the contractor in this case had removed the safety equipment already provided and then failed to either give the victim proper instruction or gave him bad instructions.

                        I still don't understand how the guy's employer got out from under any of this. If the guy had no experience, then his work should have been properly instructed and monitored until the contractor felt he was safely qualiified. If on the other hand, the victim lied about his experience and skill, then he alone should be the fault. Either way, I don't see how the manufacturer of the tool can be faulted, considering that they met all of the safety requirement at the time.

                        In any case, if these kinds of accidents were reviewed by knowledgeable people, then I think many of these kinds of verdicts and the resulting awards and mandates would not go as far as they do.

                        I've said before, that this "Sawstop" push is, in my opinion, ridiculous and certainly the existance of a "technology" cannot be blamed on the product manufacturer when it is NOT employed in the product... unless it is mandated! If Ryobi is at fault and forced to pay damages to a victim because a "technology" was available, but not used then what does that say for any other industry or product? If you are killed or injured (or had a relative do so) in an airplane crash, do you get to sue Boeing for not having parachutes available to all passengers who might well have lived if they could have bailed out? (That "technology" has been around for at least 80 years.)

                        Do we get to blame anyone who was killed or injured in a late 70's or 80's automobile crash... "air bags" were available, but NOT mandated.

                        The list could go on and on, but I think the point is that technology can be a safeguard, but it is not always mandated, and should not be mandated to prevent blatent stupidity.

                        CWS

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                        • #13
                          Re: Courts, Government and Sawstop

                          The deadline to respond to the proposed rule ended yesterday, I hope everyone took the opportunity to speak their mind. Of course I have no faith that it will matter.

                          I don't know what the CPSC's next step will be or when, but I think I'll be considering a new table saw in the very near future. Who knows, maybe the value of my TS2424 will go up.

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