Product Liability Lawsuits and the Most Dangerous Household Appliances
A kitchen is a dangerous place. According to the BBC, the statistics of kitchen accidents involving knives, boiling water, and deep-fat fryers are staggering. In the UK alone, over 67,000 children are injured in the kitchen every year. And this figure does not even include the adults who suffer injuries while deep-frying a whole chicken or accidentally cutting their finger with a bagel knife.
But are you aware that some of the appliances used in the kitchen are known to be defective? Numerous class action lawsuits have been filed against major brands for manufacturing faulty products that led to serious injuries.
So how does one know if their new appliance might be dangerous? Here are some common household appliances that are problematic:
When a pressure cooker’s lid is sealed, it traps steam to cook food by building up pressure and heating the contents inside. This method of cooking is faster than others and helps preserve nutrients such as those found in vegetables and rice.
But what happens if your pressure cooker malfunctions? That’s when you might be able to file a lawsuit against its manufacturer or seller under product liability law. The pressure cooker lawsuit involves several companies that manufacture and sell pressure cookers that have allegedly caused serious injuries to consumers.
The lawsuits claim that these pressure cookers are defective and can explode during use, causing severe burns, scarring, and other injuries. In some cases, a pressure cooker explosion has even resulted in death.
TorHoerman Law, LLC (THL), a law firm handling class-action suits, states that if you are seeking reimbursement or financial compensation for the expenses incurred due to a pressure cooker, a class-action lawsuit might be appropriate for you. However, the law firm adds if you wish to seek compensation for damages related to a defective pressure cooker explosion, you should consider filing an individual claim for a defective pressure cooker lawsuit.
Whirlpool dryers were involved in a major lawsuit due to a design flaw that led to a high risk of house fires. The dryers were sold under various brand names, including Whirlpool, Kenmore, and Maytag, and contained a faulty component in the heating element that could overheat and ignite lint buildup.
A report on Top Class Action states that a class action lawsuit was filed by Whirlpool consumers in 2020, claiming that the dishwashers are prone to leaks due to faulty seals within the appliances. The lawsuit alleges that Whirlpool knew about this defect but failed to inform consumers or address the issue. As a result, the plaintiffs and other consumers suffered from leaks and property damage, leading to out-of-pocket expenses for repairs.
Whirlpool has not admitted any liability but has agreed to settle the claims for $21 million.
The Samsung washers lawsuit began in 2016 when the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a warning regarding certain top-loading Samsung washing machines. The warning stated that the machines could potentially explode during use, posing a risk of injury or property damage. Samsung subsequently issued a voluntary recall of millions of washing machines in the US, and consumers were offered either a repair or a refund.
However, the issue continued to persist, and in 2017, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Samsung, alleging that the company had knowingly sold defective washing machines and failed to provide adequate remedies for affected consumers.
The lawsuit sought damages for property damage, expenses incurred in repairing or replacing the machines, and other losses. Samsung ultimately settled the lawsuit in 2019 for $6.55 million, which was distributed among affected consumers. The company also agreed to change its policies and procedures for handling future product recalls.
General Electric Ranges
In 2014, General Electric (GE) was hit with a class-action lawsuit alleging that its ranges posed a significant risk of fire due to a design defect. The lawsuit alleged that the ranges were designed in a way that allowed excess heat to build up in the control panel, which could then cause a fire.
The plaintiffs claimed that GE knew about the defect but failed to warn customers or issue a recall. The case was settled in 2015 for $3.5 million, with GE agreeing to replace or repair the faulty ranges and provide compensation to customers who had experienced property damage or other losses due to fires caused by the ranges. The settlement also required GE to take steps to prevent similar incidents in the future, such as redesigning the ranges to reduce the risk of fire.
According to ClassAction.org, for alleged defects that cause some of its refrigerators to stop cooling. The refrigerators in question are equipped with linear compressors, which were intended to enhance the reliability and durability of the product. However, many consumers have reported that the refrigerators have stopped functioning within 36 months of use, leading to what one news source has referred to as a “pandemic of dying fridges.”
The plaintiffs claimed that LG was aware of the problem but failed to take adequate measures to fix it or warn consumers. The lawsuit sought compensation for the repair or replacement of the affected refrigerators and other damages.
LG denied the allegations and fought the lawsuit but eventually agreed to a settlement in 2020. As part of the settlement, LG agreed to provide cash payments, repair reimbursement, or replacements for affected refrigerators, as well as extended warranties and other benefits.
As you can see, many dangers lie in waiting for you and your family in your home. The best way to avoid these hazards is by being aware of them and taking steps to prevent them as much as possible.
In addition, if something does happen that causes injury or damage, then it’s important to know how to file a product liability lawsuit so that compensation can be obtained from the manufacturer or seller of the product involved to cover medical expenses or repair costs incurred by the victim(s).