Lawyers for a 2-year-old girl who was severely burned by an exploding pressure cooker have achieved a $27 million settlement on her behalf.
The lawsuit was filed by the family of Samantha Gonzalez, a toddler who was being bathed in the sink by her grandmother when the Vasconia® Pressure Cooker exploded in 2015.
She suffered severe burns over 60% of her body. Doctors were eventually forced to amputate one of her legs, a hip, and all of her fingers. She was left with disfiguring scars over most of her body.
The settlement funds will cover ongoing medical care, plastic surgery, and prosthetics.
The original investigation found no defect with the pressure cooker, but when attorneys reviewed the evidence, they concluded that the pressure cooker must have opened while it was still pressurized.
“The pressure cooker release valve activated by mistake, causing Samantha’s grandmother to grab the pressure cooker. A split-second later, the device exploded and shot into the sink.”
They also discovered that the pressure cooker had the wrong size internal lock-bar, which meant the lock didn’t actually lock.
The manufacturer fixed the problem after the first 3 years of selling the pressure cooker, but never recalled the defective models or reported the upgrades.