By far the greater part of modern buildings is made up of manufactured products, eg bricks, steel, paint, sanitary fittings, particle board, mechanical equipment. Even nominally 'natural' materials, such as timber, are increasingly used in laminated or other treated forms, thus bringing them into the 'manufactured' category.
The subject of liability for the performance of manufactured products is therefore of increasing concern to architects, as well as, of course, to manufacturers. 'Product liability' is a growth area in litigation. It is important that architects have an understanding of the situation so that they can take appropriate measures in the interests of both the client and themselves.