Rifles Recalled Over a Potential Trigger Malfunction
Sig Sauer recently announced that some Sig Sauer Sig 716 DMR, 516 Carbon Fiber, and M400 Predators that were built with a two-stage trigger may have been constructed with an improperly heat-treated hammer, according to Gun.com.
“Over time this could result in a trigger malfunction creating a significant safety hazard,” according to a statement released by Sig Sauer in which it announced what Gun.com described as a “mandatory recall” on the select rifle models. The recall involves replacement of the rifle’s hammer and trigger assembly.
For consumers to determine if a particular Sig Sauer rifle model is subject to the recall, the New Hampshire-based arms manufacturer indicated that the recalled models will bear a “SIG” mark that is etched into the hammer. There is also a serial-number look-up tool with instructions that may be found on the Sig Sauer website. After contacting Sig Sauer, individuals in possession of the recalled rifles will be sent a pre-addressed shipping label and box to ship their “lower” to the Sig Sauer factory. There is an estimated two-to-three week turnaround time to receive the repaired Sig Sauer.
The recall does not affect any military or law enforcement rifles or any SIG MCX or MPX products.
National law firm, Parker Waichman LLP, is dedicated to protecting the rights of victims injured by defective and dangerous products and has decades of successful experience representing clients in personal injury litigation. Attorneys at the firm are available to answer questions for any individuals seeking legal information for potential recalled and defective rifles and rifle components.
What is the Difference Between Single Triggers and Two-Stage Triggers?
According to Accuracy-Tech.com, the difference between single and two-stage triggers is a matter of preference and both bear unique benefits. The single strange trigger is a more traditional trigger, while the two-stage trigger is constructed with a stop—or break wall. This break wall divides the first and second so-called “stage” from each other. This element is typically seen in more expensive triggers due to the complexity of their design.
Single stage triggers are seen in all pistols and most rifles. This means that there is one range of motion that is used to pull the trigger through to release of the firing pin or striker. Many consider the single trigger beneficial due to its simplicity, according to Accuracy-Tech.com. Gun users and aficionados typically agree that the single stage trigger is easier to adjust and is also easier due to what is described as crisper in the “break” of the trigger. The pressure needed to pull the trigger is also a personal choice and involves what is required to pull the trigger through its single stage before the rifle fires. This may involve trigger finger fatigue and challenges when sensing when to consciously fire the rifle.
The advantage of a two-stage trigger, according to Accuracy-Tech.com, is being able to determine precisely when the trigger is going to break and cause the rifle to fire. When the user squeezes back and applies pressure on a two-stage trigger the user progresses through the first stage. This is essentially identical to a single stage at this initial point. Instead of breaking and firing, the “break wall” is hit, which is the stopping point between the first and second stages. At the break wall, the user applies pressure beyond what it takes to obtain that fire, and the rifle shoots.
Accuracy-Tech.com explains that, a two-stage trigger enables a better shot timing in positional shooting and the two stages may be set up in the way the user chooses, making the first stage heavier or lighter than the second stage. For instance, setting the first stage up for 50-75 percent of the total pull weight is considered ideal because when the break wall is hit, the user is ready to fire and a touch of additional pressure is needed to execute the shot.
Prior Defective Rifle Lawsuits
Previously, Parker Waichman filed a class action lawsuit alongside several other distinguished law firms on behalf of Washington and North Carolina consumers who owned the Remington Arms Model 700 Rifle. Plaintiffs similarly alleged that the firearm utilized a defective trigger mechanism, known as the “Walker Fire Control.” This mechanism incorporates a separate trigger connector, which allegedly may cause debris to build up within the gun, predisposing it to fire without a trigger pull. That lawsuit was filed on January 29, 2013 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle (Case 2:13-cv-00172). Remington Arms Company, LLC; Sporting Goods Properties, Inc.; and E.I. Du Pont Nemours and Company were named as defendants.
According to a previous CNBC report, the Model 700 Rifle posed serious safety risks due to its allegedly defective Walker Fire Control trigger mechanism. The patented design, which was first introduced in 1948, was found in over five million Remington brand firearms at the time of the lawsuit. The Walker Fire Control uses what is known as a separate “trigger connector.” This trigger connector is an internal component that is not utilized by any other firearms manufacturer. This trigger connector is also not physically attached to the trigger and is maintained in place by tension from a spring and side plates. This construction creates a fully enclosed housing. When the user pulls the trigger, the trigger body pushes the connector forward. This action causes the sear to fall and the rifle to fire, which creates a gap between the trigger body and the trigger connector. The design allegedly enables debris to accumulate within the gap when the trigger is being pulled, leading the buildup to restrict return of the trigger to its original location under the sear. This could lead the rifle to malfunction in the absence of a trigger pull.
Allegations in the original lawsuit included that the defendants were aware of the defective nature of the Walker Fire Control before it was released to the market; that firing in the absence of a trigger pull is such a common event that Remington developed abbreviations to refer to the conditions under which the unintended firing occurred; that “fire on safe release” or “FSR,” is just one common form of malfunction that is allegedly associated with the Walker Fire Control; and that the actual number of unintended firings between 1992 and 2004 is much higher given that it is not likely that every consumer who experienced a misfire would report the problem to Remington if they had avoided injury or property damage. The lawsuit also indicated that the defendants acknowledged receiving 3,273 customer complaints about the Remington Model 700 rifles firing without a trigger pull between 1992 and 2004, a total of approximately five unintended firings per week for the 12-year period.
As part of its settlement to end Missouri and Washington federal class actions alleging the Remington triggers caused accidental discharges and fatalities, Remington Arms Co. LLC agreed to replace allegedly faulty triggers in millions of Model 700 rifles, its most popular model. Plaintiffs’ attorneys will seek $12.5 million in fees, costs, and expenses, according to the motion.
Legal Help for Victims of Defective Sig Sauer Rifles
Parker Waichman LLP has years of experience representing clients in numerous defective product lawsuits. If you or someone you know suffered injury or death that is may be associated with a recalled rifle or rifle component, such as the recalled Sig Sauer rifle, you may have valuable legal rights. Our firm offers free, no-obligation case evaluations. For more information, fill out our online form or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).