Posted on: 14 January 2019
Could your pressure cooker be defective? Would you even know?
Pressure cookers are not new, but they've recently gained a great deal of popularity among busy consumers looking for an easy -- and fast -- way to prepare home-cooked meals for their families. Unfortunately, that rise in popularity has lead to a rise in accidents, many of which are not the consumer's fault.
If you own a pressure cooker, here's some important information.
Modern pressure cookers aren't like the old ones your parents had.
Old-fashioned pressure cookers were a bit simpler in design than modern pressure cookers. The old ones simply had a lid that locked on tight to hold in steam and a valve that could be used to release the pressure as necessary. They had few working components, which made them less susceptible to malfunction.
Today, pressure cookers look a lot like crock pots and are usually electric. They also tend to have more intricate locking mechanisms, seals, and release valves -- and all of those things are prone to failure. Seals and gaskets tend to frequently malfunction, but the biggest danger comes from pressure release valves that don't function as intended. The pressure inside the affected pots then builds until the whole thing explodes -- spraying hot liquids, food, and steam everywhere.
Numerous pressure cookers have been recalled -- but many consumers don't know it.
The most recent pressure cooker recall was made by a company called Rena Ware, which admits that a number of its model 2153 Nutrex pressure cookers sold from December 2015 to June 2018 may be defective. There have been at least 13 incidents of "unintended depressurization" (which is code for a blowout) and at least five serious injuries.
However, this is just one of the many different pressure cookers that have been recalled over the years -- and consumers are often unaware when a recall happens. (If you're unsure about the recall status of your own pressure cooker, you can check recalls.gov for information.)
Other pressure cookers stay on the market despite flaws in their design.
Worse than the recalled units, there are many pressure cookers out there on the market that probably should be recalled but haven't been. Companies sometimes calculate out the cost of a recall against the number of claims they may have to pay out in court if an injury victim sues. If the estimated cost of payouts to victims seems less expensive than a recall, they'll accept the gamble.
Product liability laws make it very clear that manufacturers, distributors, and retailers are all responsible when a defective product goes on the market. If you or your loved one ends up injured due to a blowout, talk to a pressure cooker injury lawyer today.Share