It is, unfortunately, fairly common for people to sustain injuries from using defective tools or equipment such as ladders or scaffolding with faulty latching mechanisms or broken or improperly modified power tools. In circumstances where the tool was supplied by a third party, the party supplying the tool or chattel is often the employer of the injured worker, and the injury occurs on property owned or controlled by the employer. In such circumstances, the claim is often governed by OSHA regulations or principles of premises liability. However, even where those principles do not apply, liability can arise as a result of negligently supplying a defective chattel. The rule as stated in the Restatement (Second) of Torts § 392 is as follows:
Chattel Dangerous for Intended Use
One who supplies to another . . . a chattel to be used for the supplier's business purposes is subject to liability to those for whose use the chattel is supplied . . . for physical harm caused by the use of the chattel in the manner for which and by person for whose use the chattel is supplied (a) if the supplier fails to exercise reasonable care to make the chattel safe for the use for which it is supplied, or (b) if he fails to exercise reasonable care to discover its dangerous condition or character, and to inform those whom he should expect to use it.