United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania
TAYLOR TOURS, LLC, and NATIONAL INTERSTATE INSURANCE COMPANY, as subrogee of Taylor Tours, LLC, Plaintiffs,
SENSATA TECHNOLOGIES, INC., SENSATA TECHNOLOGIES OF MASSACHUSETTS, INC., PREVOST CAR, INC., PREVOST CAR (US), INC., and TEXAS ELECTRONIC INSTRUMENTS, Defendants.
a product liability case. Plaintiffs, Taylor Tours, LLC, and
National Interstate Insurance Company, as subrogee of Taylor
Tours, LLC, purchased a tour bus and replacement circuit
breakers for the bus from defendants Prevost Car, Inc., and
Prevost Car (US), Inc. (collectively “Prevost”).
Following a tour bus fire allegedly caused by a defect in the
bus's electrical system or a faulty replacement circuit
breaker, plaintiffs filed this suit, asserting negligence,
strict product liability, and breach of warranties claims
under Pennsylvania law against Prevost and other defendants.
Presently before the Court is Prevost's Motion to
Dismiss. For the reasons that follow, the Court denies
facts of the case as set forth in plaintiffs' Amended
Complaint are summarized as follows.
Taylor Tours is an Arizona Limited Liability Company that
“designs, manufactures, assembles, sells and otherwise
distributes tour buses.” Am. Compl. ¶
Plaintiff National Interstate Insurance Company, as subrogee
of Taylor Tours, is an Ohio corporation that provided
insurance to Taylor Tours during the relevant time period.
Am. Compl. ¶¶ 2-3. Prevost defendants, Delaware
corporations with their principal place of business in
Canada, design, manufacture, assemble, sell, and distribute
buses, coaches, and motor homes. Am. Compl. ¶¶ 6-7.
point prior to July 2, 2014, Prevost designed, manufactured,
and placed into the stream of commerce tour buses, including
a 2008 Prevost MTH SL2 45E tour bus. Am. Compl. ¶ 10.
Taylor Tours purchased the 2008 tour bus from Prevost. Am.
Compl. ¶ 11. Taylor Tours alleges that Prevost
incorrectly installed a circuit breaker in the bus,
constructed the bus in a manner which allowed moisture and
other elements to enter into the bus's circuit breakers,
failed to install proper overcurrent protection in the bus,
and provided defective replacement circuit breakers for the
bus. Am. Compl. ¶¶ 12-16.
2, 2014, a “fire erupted within the subject tour
bus” that Taylor Tours purchased from Prevost. Am.
Compl. ¶ 18. The fire allegedly caused extensive damage
to Taylor Tours' real and personal property, and
“other consequential and incidental damage including
clean-up costs, repair, and other associated expenses.”
Am. Compl. ¶¶ 18-19. Subsequent investigation of
the origin of the fire “revealed significant arcing on
circuitry within the bus, ” and that the “subject
circuit breaker failed to open to stop the electrical event
before the fire occurred.” Am. Compl. ¶ 20.
filed their initial Complaint in the Philadelphia Court of
Common Pleas on July 25, 2016. On August 29, 2016, Prevost
removed the case to federal court, invoking diversity
jurisdiction. On September 6, 2016, Prevost filed a Motion to
Dismiss. (Doc. No. 4). Plaintiffs subsequently filed an
Amended Complaint. (Doc. No. 16, filed Nov. 3, 2016). In
their Amended Complaint, plaintiffs assert claims against
Prevost for strict product liability (Count IV), negligence
(Count V), and breach of warranties (Count VI). Prevost filed
the pending Motion to Dismiss on November 7, 2016. (Doc. No.
17). Prevost seeks dismissal of all claims against it.
12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure permits a
party to respond to a pleading by filing a motion to dismiss
for “failure to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted.” To survive a motion to dismiss, the complaint
must allege facts that “‘raise a right to relief
above the speculative level.'” Victaulic Co. v.
Tieman, 499 F.3d 227, 234 (3d Cir. 2007) (quoting
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555
(2007)). A complaint must contain “sufficient factual
matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief
that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). A district court first
identifies those factual allegations that constitute nothing
more than “legal conclusions” or “naked
assertions.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555, 557.
Such allegations are “not entitled to the assumption of
truth” and must be disregarded. Iqbal, 556
U.S. at 679. The court then assesses “the
‘nub' of the plaintiff['s] complaint-the
well-pleaded, nonconclusory factual allegation[s]”-to
determine whether it states a plausible claim for relief.
Motion to Dismiss, Prevost argues that plaintiffs' strict
product liability and negligence claims against Prevost are
barred by the economic loss doctrine. Mot. at 5. Prevost also
contends that plaintiffs' breach of warranties claim is
barred by the expiration of their express warranty from
Prevost and by the four-year statute of limitations for
breach of implied warranties contained in the Uniform
Commercial Code. Mot. at 10. The Court will address each
argument in turn.
Strict Product Liability ...