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Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Disasters End in Serious Injuries

Pressure CookerAccording to a national survey, one of the top ten gifts given during the 2017 holidays was the Instant Pot pressure cooker. Consumers continuously rave about the ease and convenience of the reduced cooking time without losing the flavor of a slow cook method. However, pressure cooker explosions are some of the most dangerous kitchen accidents, often ending in extensive damage to the home, severe burn injury, and potential death. Although newer pressure cookers come equipped with additional safety mechanisms, accidents happen.

How Pressure Cookers Work

Pressure cookers create an air-tight seal on the container, trapping all food and moisture inside. When you heat a liquid, it turns into steam, creating pressurization. The combination of the pressure and steam infuses the food with flavor and reduces cooking time to one-third of the ordinary cooking time. This method sounds like a dream come true for the busy parent on-the-go.

Are They Safe?

In 1938, the first pressurized cooker was released into the market and featured large lug nuts to secure the lid and marketed for a quick, reliable canning method. Additionally, this allowed homegrown vegetable harvests to last from season to season. Once popularity increased, many companies looking to make a more substantial profit began cutting corners to reduce costs. During this period, lids would fly off, thus ruining kitchens and taking lives.

Fast forward to the modern pressure cookers, which have two or three redundant safety valves in case one gets clogged, two pressure gauges for verification, a locking lid with a spring-loaded piston to prevent early opening, and fail-safes that stop pressurization if everything is not aligned or functioning correctly. Therefore, today’s pressure cookers have a significantly reduced risk of injury.

Safety Tips

Although the Instant Pot has more safety features than many other pressure cookers on the market, accidents happen and can result in significant burn injuries. Tips to avoid an explosion include:

  • Never leave the product unattended;
  • Use the proper amount of water; and
  • Do not use it for anything other than its intended purpose.
Accidents Happen

Even with all of the safety measures, vents clog, lids open prematurely, and safety measures fail. In 2015, Instant Pot issued a recall for multiple models causing electrical burns, during which period, over 1,000 of those models were sold to consumers.

If you or a loved one experienced a severe injury while using a pressure cooker, a San Jose, CA product injury attorney can help. The attorneys at Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. will research your case and hold all accountable parties responsible for their negligence. Call us today at (408) 289-1417 to schedule your free initial consultation to discuss your options.

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