A complaint filed in Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas by Fred Eisenberg and Todd Schoenhaus asserts that defective construction equipment caused the death of Bruce Hardy, Jr., of Bainbridge, Pa. in December 2010. The construction accident occurred at a York County hydroelectric plant owned by PPL Generation. Hardy was employed as a laborer by the general contractor for an expansion project at the plant.
Hardy’s children are bringing this wrongful death lawsuit against the equipment’s manufacturer Caterpillar, Inc., its distributor Cleveland Brothers Equipment Company, and the Allentown-based PPL Generation.
According to the complaint, Hardy and two other laborers were attempting to use an excavator to dislodge equipment that was stuck in a deep trench. While leaning over to communicate with the other workers, the excavator operator inadvertently bumped the joystick control and caused the bucket to swing, strike Hardy, and pin him against a rock wall. Hardy died at the worksite from traumatic head and neck injuries.
“The excavator was unreasonably dangerous because it was designed without the proper safeguards to prevent accidental activation of the joystick controls. This design failure led to the unfortunate death of Mr. Hardy, and the responsible parties need to be held accountable,” said attorney Todd Schoenhaus of Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, PC.