For John Norrie, the recall of his HP Pavilion Notebook computer came too late.
The laptop allegedly overheated, causing a fire that ripped through Norrie’s Plymouth MA home in November 2006 while he was sleeping. The house was destroyed and Norrie suffered serious injuries in the process of escaping.
His lawyers have now filed a lawsuit against laptop-maker Hewlett-Packard Co. and are seeking more than $225,000 in damages. The suit, first filed in Plymouth Superior Court, was transferred to US District Court. According to court papers, the laptop – a gift Norrie received six months before the fire – was defective.
Hewlett-Packard “was negligent with respect to its manufacture, sale, instructors, and/or distribution of the subject laptop which was defective or was otherwise unfit for use by consumers,’’ the suit says.
Since 2005, Hewlett-Packard has announced recalls of its lithium-ion batteries four times in conjunction with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission and other regulators. Customers affect ed by the recalls were able to receive replacement batteries at no charge.
In recent years, other computer makers, including Dell and Compaq, have also recalled millions of lithium-ion batteries because they were prone to overheating and posed a fire hazard. In 2006, Apple Inc. recalled 1.8 million battery packs because of the same issue.
The problems with computer batteries have led to several deaths. For instance, a 56-year-old Vancouver man was killed last August when his Hewlett-Packard laptop burst into flames on a couch.
The death prompted a warning by Canadian officials that the devices should not be left on soft furniture because the material can block air vents and cause overheating.
Others have said battery overheating may be due to internal problems with computers, not where the devices are placed. Last fall, Reuters reported that a Taiwanese national research organization was working on new technology that would prevent lithium-ion batteries from short-circuiting malfunctions that can cause them to rapidly heat to 500 degrees and sometimes explode.
If you or a family member has been injured because of the fault of someone else; by negligence, personal injury, slip and fall, car accident, medical malpractice, trucking accident, drunk driving, dangerous and defective drugs, bad product, toxic injury etc then please contact the Fort Worth Texas Personal Injury Attorney Dr. Shezad Malik. For a no obligation, free case analysis, please call 888-210-9693 or Contact Me Online.