The individual owners of Michigan-based glove manufacturer Glove Coaters Inc. deny that their gloves had anything to do with the glass accident involving a Houston glass employee last year, and are asking a federal judge to deny him any compensation from what they call an “unavoidable” accident.
Anthony Lopez was working for Craftsman Fabricated Glass last July when he claims he cut his hand on a large piece of glass while wearing gloves made by Glove Coaters Inc.
Citing alleged extensive damage from a severed tendon and nerve damage to his dominant hand, Lopez is seeking damages “substantially more than $75,000,” according to court documents.
Glove Coaters has denied any liability from the case’s outset in January, but, in answering the complaint against them, owners Gene Tassie, Donald Tassie, Emily Tassie Chard and William Tassie recently filed individual documents with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas denying that the accident in which Lopez was hurt was “the direct and proximate result of the condition of the gloves,” according to court records.
The court had previously rejected company’s motion to dismiss the case based on allegations that Lopez’s employer was responsible for selecting “appropriate hand protection.”
In the latest legal wrangling, the defendants conceded that statements on the company’s website rise to the level of warranties, but stood behind their company website statement that declared that its “manufacturing process generates a safety glove that is durable, cut-resistant and comfortable.”
All four owners stated that they lack “sufficient knowledge” to form a belief about the truth of the allegation that the glove Lopez was wearing at the time of the accident was manufactured by Glove Coaters.
Lopez alleges the accident took place “on or about July 3, 2012” when he and several co-workers were standing in the receiving end of the glass-cutting machine. The glass had already passed through when it collided with Lopez’s cut-resistant, glass-handling glove, resulting in “severe personal injuries and serious bodily impairment,” according to court documents.
In his suit, Lopez alleges that the gloves were “defectively-designed and manufactured and fraudulently marked ‘safety glove.’ ”
Andrew Dunlap, Lopez’s Houston-based attorney, did not return a call seeking comment.
Glove Coaters ownership remains adamant, however, that the gloves were not “in a defective condition or unreasonably dangerous.” They denied in court papers that any of Lopez’s injuries were the result of “any act or omission” by their company.
Defense attorney John-Robert Skrabanek declined comment for now when reached at his office on Monday morning.
Both sides are a seeking a jury trial to resolve the matter.