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A California woman recently filed a new pressure cooker lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. She claims that the product was defective and did not work as advertised, leaving her with serious injuries.

Bella Pressure Cooker Explodes, Burning Plaintiff

According to her complaint, the plaintiff received the Bella 6-Quart 10-on-1 Multi-Cooker electric pressure cooker as a gift in December 2018. The device is manufactured by Sensio Company U.S. Inc., which the plaintiff has named as a defendant in the case, along with BellaHousewares.com.

The pressure cooker is designed to be used to prepare meals by cooking liquids inside the pot at high pressures. The pot produces steam, which is trapped inside the cooker. The resulting temperatures cook meals more efficiently and quickly, while allegedly maintaining more nutrients than conventional cooking methods.

On November 13, 2019, the plaintiff was using the cooker, following the instructions enclosed with it for proper operation. When she tried to open the lid, it “suddenly and without warning exploded,” causing the scalding hot liquid and other contents to fly out and land on her. She suffered severely painful and disfiguring burns to her body, resulting in pain and suffering, disability, mental anguish, embarrassment and humiliation, and loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life.

The plaintiff claims that the cooker was dangerous and that a “reasonably prudent manufacturer would not have put it on the market…” She brings counts of strict liability, negligence, breach of warranties, and failure to warn.

Hundreds of Pressure Cooker Lawsuits Filed Due to Failed Safety Mechanisms

The plaintiff joins hundreds of others who have filed similar lawsuits against the makers of various brands of pressure cookers, including the Instant Pot, Ninja Foodi, Crock-Pot, and more. In almost all cases, the safety mechanisms on these devices failed to work as advertised, allowing users to open the cookers while they were still under pressure.

When this happens, the contents inside the pot explode outward, often landing on the person using it as well as any others who may be standing nearby, including children. They can cause serious burns requiring emergency medical treatment and sometimes multiple surgeries, and these burns can leave lasting and disfiguring scars.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced the recall of several pressure cookers over the last few years. On November 24, 2020, for instance, the CPSC alerted the public to a recall of nearly 1 million Crock-Pot 6-Quart Express Crock Multi-Cookers. These cookers could pressurize when the lid was not fully locked, which could cause the lid to suddenly detach while the product was in use.

 

Sunbeam Products, the manufacturer of Crock-Pot cookers, had received 119 reports of lid detachment at the time of the recall, resulting in 99 burn injuries ranging in severity from first-degree to third-degree burns. The company advised consumers to stop using the cookers in pressure cooker mode and to contact Crock-Pot to obtain a free replacement lid at 800-323-9519.

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