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Boat manufacturer appeals boating accident verdict

Last month, boating manufacturer MasterCraft filed an appeal in a lawsuit filed against the company by two women who were injured in a boating accident in 2006. In the appeal, the company claims that the boat involved in the accident is a safe vehicle, and that it is not responsible for the women's injuries.

The boating accident occurred in July of 2006 when a group of friends were out on the MasterCraft X-45 wakeboarding boat. The two women were suddenly swept off the boat and struck by its propeller, suffering serious injuries. They filed a lawsuit against MasterCraft, alleging that the boat was unsafe and that the manufacturer was responsible for their injuries.

In June, a California jury found in favor of the plaintiffs, awarding more than $30 million to one woman and $530,000 to the other. The jury found that MasterCraft was 80 percent responsible for the women's injuries. The other 20 percent was attributed to the driver of the boat, who admitted to drinking alcohol before driving and having more passengers on the boat than was recommended. The driver is not appealing the decision against him.

MasterCraft, however, has filed an appeal in California's Third District Court of Appeals in Sacramento. The boat manufacturer is claiming that the boat is safe and that it is not responsible for the injuries of the plaintiffs. Further, MasterCraft is alleging that the plaintiff is only attempting to win a monetary judgment, accusing them of "trying to go after what's perceived as deep pockets," instead of seeking retribution and just compensation for the injuries they suffered.

Source: Trade Only Today, "MasterCraft appeals boat design verdict," Sept. 28, 2011

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