Crossbow, Thumb … Yet Another Lawsuit

You’d think even if someone never had hunted or shot a crossbow before in their life that by just looking at it — especially when cocked — they’d be able to understand that their thumb definitely should not be anywhere near the cable.

Scales of Justice GavelBut a Texas woman has filed a lawsuit against Barnett Outdoors, saying the company was negligent for making a crossbow without a finger guard. She put her thumb above the rail and the cable zipped off part of it while trying to shoot it in September 2012.

Kathy Smith filed lawsuit July 15 in the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division.

The Southeast Texas Record reports that Smith’s son bought the Barnett Jackal crossbow last September and then brought it to her home Sept. 28. The lawsuit said Smith said she was using the crossbow as directed and on her first shot the cable of the crossbow severed part of her thumb.

Well, that’s interesting. If a crossbow is used correctly, your thumb or fingers should be nowhere near the rail and cable. That’s just common sense, ain’t it? And before you shoot a weapon shouldn’t you ask to find out what it does and how to hold it, use it and be safe with it?

According to the Record, the lawsuit says Barnett Outdoors is accused of strict products liability, negligence, breach of warranty, violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. Smith claims Barnett Outdoors “is negligent for designing the crossbow in a manner that a user could place their finger above the rail of the crossbow and without a bar, benchmark or finger guard that would prevent a user’s fingers from moving up and in the way of the string, for negligently marketing and promoting the crossbow as safe to use without a finger guard or finger reminder, for failing to adequately warn consumers of the risks and dangers associated with using the crossbow and failing to test the crossbow.”

Read the full report here.