Abstract A limited number of reports have detailed the cause of fracture of a highly cross-linked polyethylene liner. Typically, the fractures have occurred in a region of thin and/or unsupported polyethylene, in association with superiorly directed edge loading conditions secondary to an excessively inclinated acetabular component. This case report details an unusual fracture mechanism of a 5-mrad cross-linked liner caused by horizontal loading conditions. The report details several factors that were felt to be etiologic including the specific liner locking mechanism. The treatment options are discussed.