FieldTurf was supposed to be a durable and weather-resistant artificial playing surface for sports fields. The company who manufactured it, Tarkett, even offered an eight-year guarantee. However, it is now facing multiple product liability lawsuits from school systems in California. Many fields in Ohio and across the nation utilize the artificial turf as well.
The primary purchasers of FieldTurf were school districts and athletic departments, lured into purchase by the manufacturer’s claims that the turf would last over eight years and require less upkeep than grass. However, the artificial grass is purportedly wearing out much more quickly than promised, to the point that it becomes hazardous for athletes. One study found that athletes playing on artificial surfaces such as FieldTurf more frequently experience ACL injuries.
The school system officials who filed the product liability claims allege that, despite being given eight-year warranties, the fields began breaking, splitting and thinning after six years. However, purchasers of the turf say the manufacturer is refusing to replace the faulty playing fields, thereby violating the warranty. They claim that the company even knew the artificial turf it sold was defective because the company filed its own lawsuit in 2011 against a fiber supply company for providing faulty fibers.
On top of litigation from customers alleging the company breached the warranty agreement, the parent company Tarkett may also face product liability claims from parents whose children were injured due to the deterioration of the artificial playing surfaces. Such claims would allege that the company should be held responsible for any injuries caused by the defective product. Residents of Ohio who have been injured themselves, or whose children have been injured by the defective FieldTurf — or any other defective products — can contact a lawyer to discuss their legal options.
Source: sports.yahoo.com, “FieldTurf Makers Face Lawsuits for Defective Turf”, Jacob Maslow, Dec. 22, 2016