Man Sues Hewlett Packard over Laptop Fire

The Boston Globe reports that John Norrie has filed a lawsuit against Hewlett-Packard Co. The lawsuit, filed in Plymouth Superior Court in Massachusetts and transferred to U.S. District Court, seeks $225,000 in damages.

The lawsuit claims that Norrie’s HP laptop overhead and started a fire that destroyed his home while he was sleeping. Norrie also suffered serious injuries while escaping from the burning house. According to the lawsuit, the laptop, which had been received as a gift six months prior to the fire, was a defective product.

The suit states that Hewlett Packard was “negligent with respect to its manufacture, sale, instructors, and/or distribution of the subject laptop which was defective or was otherwise unfit for use by consumers.”

Neither Norrie, his attorney, nor the attorney for Hewlett Packard could be reached for comment before the articles was published.

Hewlett Packard has recalled its lithium-ion laptop batteries on four different occasions since 2005. Consumers were able to receive replacement batteries with each recall. Other laptop manufacturers like Apple, Dell and Compaq have also recalled laptop batteries in recent years because were prone to overheating.

Laptop battery fires have led to several deaths and injuries. Last year a 56-year-old Canadian was killed after his laptop burst into flames in his home. The computer had been sitting on the man’s couch. After this incident, Canadian officials warned consumers that laptop computers should not be placed on soft furniture such as couches because the laptop’s ventilation system may be blocked, and this can cause overheating. When using your laptop, you should make sure that the vents are not blocked. If you begin to feel increased heat from your laptop, shut it down. Overheating may also be caused by internal problems with the batteries and computer designs.

In the video below, you can see a laboratory demonstration of a lithium ion laptop battery fire. If your laptop bursts into flames, move away from the computer quickly. More explosions will likely occur. Laptop fires typically start a chain reaction of battery cell explosions inside the computer. With each explosion, the laptop burns hotter. Do not use water to try to put out laptop battery fires. These are electrical, chemical fires, and it’s best to use a fire extinguisher.

If you've been injured by an exploding laptop or any defective product, contact an experienced Atlanta personal injury attorney today. Call MLN Law at 404-531-9700 to schedule your free consultation.