Failed Smoke Detectors Present Major Hazard
Each year, about 2,000 people in the United States lose their lives in residential fires, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. About 2/3rds of those home fire deaths occur in residences that have no smoke detectors or no working smoke detectors. Why would a smoke alarm not go off? There are different possibilities, but a fire alarm malfunction could be due to a manufacturing defect or improper installation and/or maintenance. Those who had a duty to provide your residence with a working smoke detector can be held responsible for smoke alarm malfunctions. This could include a contractor or builder of your house, or a landlord, or a manufacturer could be liable for making a defective smoke detector.
Depending on the type of fire—whether it is slow smoldering or fast flaming—the amount of time you have to escape before being overcome by smoke, heat and toxic gases can vary, which is why early detection and warning from a good working smoke alarm can make all the difference in enabling you to escape in time.
Over the years, we’ve represented families of those killed by residential fires, as well as people who have been injured in fires. Smoke inhalation can cause severe brain damage from oxygen deprivation and exposure to toxic gases, and can lead to death. Second, third, and fourth degree burns can be extremely dangerous and life-threatening too. In cases involving potential smoke detector malfunctions, it is important that you get legal representation by an experienced lawyer who has investigated and analyzed these kinds of cases before. Please feel free to call us at (219)736-9700 to speak with an attorney if you have questions about injuries caused by smoke detector malfunctions.