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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:James Caboni was driving a 1996 General Motors Chevy S-10 pickup in Louisiana when another car swerved into his lane. In trying to get out of the other driver’s way, Caboni lost control and slammed into a guardrail. The driver’s side air back did not deploy. Caboni hit his head on the steering wheel. Caboni filed a products liability case in Louisiana state court against GM alleging that the air bag was unreasonably dangerous, because it did not conform to an express warranty contained in the owner’s manual. GM removed to federal district court and moved for summary judgment, arguing Caboni couldn’t meet the breach-of-warranty elements in the Louisiana Products Liability Act. The district court granted GM’s motion, but the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed, finding issues of material fact existed regarding 1. whether the statement in the owner’s manual about the air bag was an express warranty. 2. whether the driver was induced by the warranty to buy the truck, 3. whether the truck conformed to the warranty, and 4. whether the falsity of the warranty caused Caboni additional injuries. The case then went to trial and the jury returned a verdict for Caboni. The district court denied GM’s motion for judgment as a matter of law. An amended judgment for $37,381 was eventually entered. GM appeals. HOLDING:Vacated and take-nothing judgment rendered. Based on this court’s prior ruling, as well as expert testimony offered at trial, the court rejects GM’s argument that the air bag performed as described in the owner’s manual. A reasonable jury could, and did, arrive at a contrary conclusion. The court does, however, agree with GM that Caboni’s failure to present expert testimony on whether the bag’s failure was the proximate cause of Caboni’s injuries was fatal. Whether the failure “enhanced” Caboni’s injuries is not something within the everyday experience of the consuming public. Expert testimony was needed. Meanwhile, GM’s expert testified that Caboni’s injury would have been the same whether the air bag deployed or not. Although the jury was not bound to accept the expert’s testimony, a plaintiff in an LPLA claim has the burden of proving every element of the claim, including enhanced injury from the air bag failing to deploy. “Caboni is wrong in stating that he does not have to present expert testimony to specifically state that he sustained more severe injuries than he would have received if the air bag had deployed because the jury could reach this conclusion based on the evidence in its entirety.” OPINION:Emilio M. Garza, J.; Barksdale, Garza and DeMoss, JJ.

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