Bug repellent explosion badly burns Massachusetts woman

Many of us used bug repellant this Fourth of July weekend to make watching fireworks and hanging out at barbeques more tolerable. And for many of us, bug repellent is a common household appliance, even safe for children to use. But what we often fail to realize is that bug repellant is usually flammable and can be very unsafe.

On Friday, a Marshfield, Massachusetts, woman was left severely burned when a pot of bug repellant exploded for some unknown reason. The explosion occurred at about 8:45 p.m. at a backyard get together in Hanover when someone went to refill the pot of mosquito repellant. The woman who was burned was sitting only a few feet away from the pot and was engulfed in flames.

The woman then ran to a nearby swimming pool where she was able to extinguish the flames on her clothes. However, her face and arms were left badly burned and she was airlifted to Boston for treatment in the intensive care unit. The woman needed skin grafts for one of her arms, her friend told local reporters.

Many news reports are calling it a freak accident, but it is also possible that this accident was caused by a defective product, or a ticking time bomb just waiting to go off. Accidents involving defective products are often the cause of personal injury lawsuits that seek to compensate the victims for the pain and suffering that they have endured.

The area of the law governing defective products is called product liability law. A successful case often requires significant research that proves that the product was not safe and should not have been placed on the market for consumers. Product liability law holds manufactures and distributors liable for releasing a dangerous product and encourages them to keep unsafe products off of the shelves.

Source: PatriotLedger.com, “Marshfield woman burned by exploding bug repellent,” 7/4/2011.