May 8, 2018, PLLR News
Defective design of dryer outlet contributed to fire, child’s death
The child’s estate sued the manufacturer of the dryer receptacle, alleging that the outlet’s design was defective and should have contained a warning that instructed users where to place wiring upon moving the outlet. Suit also named the person who had installed the receptacle. The jury awarded $650,000. Arner v. Leviton Mfg. Co.
Madison Arner, 7, died of cardiac arrest after a fire erupted at her home. She is survived by her parents.
Arner’s estate sued Leviton Manufacturing Co., alleging that the design of its 220-volt dryer receptacle was defective and led to the fire. The plaintiff claimed that the receptacle should have contained a warning that instructed users where to place wiring upon moving the outlet.
The plaintiff also sued the boyfriend of Arner’s mother, alleging that he negligently installed and mis-wired the receptacle when he moved the dryer to another location in the home, allowing the connection to loosen over time.
The jury awarded $650,000, apportioning liability at 70 percent to the boyfriend and 30 percent to Leviton.
Citation: Arner v. Leviton Mfg. Co., No. 2015-06-002373 (Pa. Ct. Com. Pl. Phila. Cnty. Dec. 20, 2017).
Plaintiff counsel: AAJ member Alan Feldman, Daniel Mann, and Edward Goldis, all of Philadelphia.