A popular fitness blogger tragically lost her life after a whipped cream dispenser exploded and struck her in the chest. The impact caused a heart attack that proved fatal. Rebecca Burger was just age 33. Hundreds of thousands of fans followed Burger on Facebook and Instagram.
Local authorities are investigating the incident which they believe occurred because of a defective design in the whipped cream canister. The accident occurred in Burger’s home. The impact of the explosion to Burger’s chest caused cardiac arrest. Although emergency response teams briefly restored Burger’s heart beat, she died the next day in the hospital.
The problem appears to be a pressure chamber made from aluminum and a plastic cap. The cap is unable to withstand the pressure generated in the aluminum canister, and an explosion occurs. That explosion is forceful, and it can cause serious injury or death. Authorities say that when the canister explodes, the plastic nozzle functions as a rubber bullet.
Consumer watchdog groups warn that there have been more than 60 reports of explosions from the canister although they believe Burger’s is the first death from the product. Other victims have reported broken bones, bruises and even loss of eyesight. Recall efforts returned only approximately 15 percent of the 160,000 products sold.
Authorities say that they believe models of the canisters produced after 2015 are likely safe. As reports of injuries continue to pour in, distributors are increasing efforts to contact individuals who may have purchased the item. Burger’s family is also trying to raise awareness about the dangers of the canisters. They are also bringing a lawsuit against the product’s manufacturers.
New Jersey and Defective Product Law
In New Jersey, when a person gets hurt or dies because of a defective product, they may have a right to recover financially from the person or corporation who makes the product. Individuals and corporations that make and sell products have an obligation to make products that are safe. When they don’t, they can face potential liability for the injuries that result.
A product might be defective because it’s poorly designed. This is likely the case with the whipped cream canister that killed Burger and injured so many others. A product might also be defective because of problems with manufacturing. An error in production can render an otherwise safe product very dangerous.
In addition, a person who makes a product has a duty to provide instructions for its proper use. They must also make sure that the product isn’t damaged during distribution in a way that causes it to become dangerous. They must also warn consumers of potential dangers with the product’s use. Even if a product has innate dangers, such as a motor vehicle, the manufacturer has a duty to take steps to make the product as safe as possible. In the case of a motor vehicle, this may be by providing air bags or anti-lock brakes.
If you’re hurt because of a defective product, there are a variety of damages that you may be entitled to recover. Payment for your medical bills is only one of the types of recovery that you may receive. Your medical bills might include physical therapy, mobility aids and medication.
If you’re unable to work, you can receive compensation for lost wages. You may also receive compensation for pain and suffering. While no two cases are alike, the goal of New Jersey’s defective product laws are to place a value on your pain and suffering and try to make you whole. While you can never return to your life as it was before your injury, this compensation seeks to try to help you after you’re hurt because of a defective product.
Learn more about Defective Product Lawsuits.