Monthly Archives: January 2015

Plaintiff’s Defect Theory Up in Smoke? Enter Malfunction Theory

The Connecticut Supreme Court recently made its ruling in White v. Mazda Motor of Am., 313 Conn. 610. In White, the plaintiff asserted design defect claims against Mazda after a car purchased by the plaintiff burst into flames one month later. The plaintiff’s complaint cited a laundry list of various defects which may have caused or contributed to the incident. To support its allegation, the plaintiff retained a certified fire investigator as an expert. The plaintiff’s expert testified that “the fire appears to…

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Court Turns Down The Heat On Requirements For Ignition Scenario Testing

A federal court in Wisconsin recently addressed what constitutes acceptable conditions for ignition scenario testing in fire cases. In Smithfield Foods, Inc. et al. v. United States, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 134523 (E.D. Wis., September 23, 2014), the plaintiffs filed suit against the United States under the Federal Tort Claims Act alleging that a pork processing facility was destroyed by a fire ignited by a M125 military flare stolen by a member of the United States Marine Corps. The plaintiffs claimed that the United…

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