A product liability lawsuit has been filed over dangerous design defects that allegedly allowed a Fagor EZ Lock pressure cooker to explode, and spray the boiling contents on a New York woman, resulting in severe burns and injuries.
The complaint (PDF) was filed by Mirsada Muratovic in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York on February 3, joining a number of similar pressure cooker explosion lawsuits filed in recent months against the manufacturers of various products which lack adequate safety features to prevent the lid from being removed while the cooker was still under pressure.
According to the lawsuit Muratovic was using the Fagor EZ Lock pressure cooker according to the instructions on February 23, 2018, when she was able to rotate and open the lid, causing the built-up pressure to release heat and steam that resulted in substantial burn injuries.
Although the Fagor EZ Lock Pressure Cooker was marketed and sold with features such as a “Safety Valve”, “Safety Window” and other features the manufacturer indicate prevent the lid from being removed with built-up pressure in the cooker. Muratovic claims the representations made about the safety of the Fagor EZ Lock pressure cookers are not just misleading, they are flatly wrong, and negligently put innocent consumers such as herself at risk of serious burn injuries and disfigurement.
“Specifically, said defects manifest themselves when, despite Defendant’s claims, the lid of the pressure cooker is removable with built-up pressure, heat and steam still inside the unit,” according to the complaint. “When the lid is removed under such circumstances, the pressure trapped within the unit causes the scalding hot contents to be projected from the unit and into the surrounding area, including onto the unsuspecting consumers, their families and other bystanders. The Plaintiff in this case was able to remove the lid while the pressure cooker retained pressure, causing her serious and substantial bodily injuries and damages.”
The lawsuit alleges the manufacturers, Zavor America, Inc. and Fecna America, knew about the pressure cooker explosion risks, and intentionally ignored and concealed its knowledge of the safety defects to generate profits, while putting consumers in harm’s way.
Pressure Cooker Lawsuits
The allegations raised in the lawsuit mirror those presented in similar lawsuits over pressure cooker explosions involving products sold by NuWave, Tristar Products, Inc., Sunbeam Products Inc. and other manufacturers in recent months, each indicating defective safety features left plaintiffs with severe burns.
According to a press release issued by Muratovic’s attorneys, Johnson // Becker, PLLC, the law firm represents over 300 individuals who have been severely burned by exploding pressure cookers, and it appears additional lawsuits are likely to be filed in the coming months and years.
Pressure cookers are designed to allow the contents to reach temperatures over 250 degrees, with massive amounts of pressure built-up inside that can be extremely dangerous if the device is used incorrectly or poorly designed.
The most common pressure cooker injuries involve burns that range from first to third degree and typically cover a large percentage of a person’s body. These types of burn injuries can leave patients prone to infections and sometimes requiring amputations.
Among other common injuries are electrocutions, spills and explosions which are often the result of the pressure cooker overheating or containing a defective or leaking seal.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued several pressure cooker recalls over the last several years due to the due to the ability for the lids of the cookers to open prematurely while contents are under pressure, allowing hot contents to be expelled and causing a scald or burn injury to individuals in the immediate area.
More recently, the CPSC issued a Sunbeam Crock-Pot recall in November 2020, impacting nearly 1 million 6-Quart Express Crock Multi-Cookers with lid locking defects that have resulted in at least 99 burn injuries. The crock pots were sold by popular retailers such as by Amazon, Walmart, Target and other retailers throughout the United States.