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Philadelphia Products Liability Lawyers


Flammable Clothing

Flammable clothing can cause serious and permanent injury and death. If the victim’s clothing caught fire as a result of the clothing having high flammability, lawsuits can be filed against the parties who were involved in the chain of distribution of the clothing as well as the person who started the fire or the company that sold that product responsible for igniting the fire.

In an action to recover for injuries suffered as a result of high flammability of clothing, the injured party or victim must prove:
  • The clothing was unsafe and unreasonably dangerous because it was highly or unusually flammable
  • The defect in the clothing caused the victim’s injuries
  • The wrongdoer sold the clothing or the fabric from which the clothing was made
  • The unsafe condition in the clothing or fabric existed at the time of the sale by the manufacturer, distributor or seller
  • The wrong doer—whether the manufacturer, distributor, or seller of flammable clothing—was engaged in the business of selling clothing or fabric or other constituent.

Here are some questions you may have:

Who can I sue for injuries or death by clothing fire?

You can sue the fabric manufacturer, distributor, or retailer where the fabric was purchased and later sewn into wearing apparel.

Is there a potential claim against parties other than those involved in the chain of distribution of the clothing?

Yes. The person who started the fire or the company who sold the product responsible for starting the fire may be liable.

Do I need a lawyer?

Yes. Even if the insurance company or the supplier were to contact you, you should speak with a product liability lawyer. When you or a loved one are injured, do not look at the insurance company or the clothing manufacturer is your friend. They are not looking out for your interests. They are looking out for their own interests, which is saving as much money as possible. But you want to be fully and fairly compensated for the injuries sustained. That is why you need our Philadelphia personal injury law firm to represent you so we can negotiate the best possible settlement for you. We will negotiate a fair settlement for you or file a lawsuit on your behalf.

If I retain a lawyer, will I have to pay legal fees and costs?

Yes. However, it is our firm’s policy in these cases that any fees and costs are paid on a contingency basis. This means we charge you a percentage of the amount collected and we advance all costs. In the event of a recovery, we recapture the cost and charge you the agreed fee. In the event there is no recovery, you owe us nothing.

Should I speak to the representative of the clothing distributor or the insurance carrier?

You should contact us if you are contacted by the insurance company or the distributor of the clothing. In some cases, you may speak with the insurance company or distributor of the clothing, but you should not make that decision unless you discuss the matter with our Philadelphia products liability lawyers first.

How long do I have to file a claim against the manufacturer of the clothing or the person that caused the fire?

In every state there is a statute of limitations. This means you must file a claim within a certain time period or your claim will be forever barred. In Pennsylvania and New Jersey, the statute of limitations is two years. You should contact us if you have any questions regarding how long you have after the injury or death to file a claim. (We can tell you the statute of limitations in every state). If you are going to use a lawyer, it is important for the lawyer to be retained as soon as possible so a timely investigation can be conducted. Timely investigations are important because as time goes by, witnesses’ memories become hazy or you may lose track of them. For example, without proper instruction you may discard damaged clothing. Damaged clothing should always be saved. Specific testing will reveal the quality of any fire protection that was added to the fabric. In addition, a prompt investigation should be done in the environment where the accident occurred because conditions often change.

Does the fact I do not have the flammable clothing prevent me from pursuing a case?

No. If you can trace the manufacturer of the garment, you can discover the condition of the fabric when sold and determine if it was highly flammable and unsafe. You can access the same fabric and obtain records regarding production of the fabric causing the injury. Same or similar fabric testing will disclose the flammability qualities. This information will permit you to decide whether to pursue a claim.

Here are some successful claims regarding flammability fabrics:

  • A child was wearing a turtleneck top. The facts proved that the garment could ignite without warning when its wearer stood three feet from a wood stove. This meant that the turtleneck top was a latent danger beyond an ordinary consumer’s knowledge and so the manufacturer had a duty to warn.
  • A three-year-old child set her football jersey on fire while playing with matches. She suffered burns and neurological impairment. The victim’s products liability lawyers were able to prove the jersey was unreasonably dangerous because it was highly flammable.
  • A cotton flannelette nightgown caught on fire on electric kitchen stove causing the death of a 67-year-old woman.
  • A young man was lying in a sleeping bag while playing with a cigarette lighter and the lighter ignited his sleeping bag and clothing causing first and second degree burns. A claim was made against the shirt manufacturer, the sleeping bag manufacturer, and the retailer for damage based on strict liability, negligence, and breach of implied and express warranties. The products were defective because they failed to comply with federal flammability standards for sleeping apparel.
  • A technician wearing a laboratory coat made from 65% polyester, 35% cotton blend material. Was working with a mixture containing 15% acetone. The mixture ignited her lab coat resulting in third-degree burns to chest, breast, upper arms, and shoulders. The evidence proved the polyester-cotton blended fabric was highly flammable and that the manufacturer and retailer failed to warn consumers that the material should not be exposed to flames or intense heat. The plaintiff claimed that the coat would have been safer if it had been made of 100% polyester or 100% cotton. When exposed to heat or flammable substances, flame could be extinguished more easily with 100% cotton coat, 100% polyester, or other flame retardant designs. The blended material prevented the fabric from falling apart and caused the melting polyester to stay close to the skin increasing the severity and depth of the burns and the scarring the plaintiff.

Contact the Experienced Philadelphia Products Liability Lawyers at Galfand Berger

Our Philadelphia personal injury law firm is experienced in representing victims of serious injury or death due to the unsafe clothing. Our Philadelphia product liability lawyers can provide excellent representation. We are happy to answer any questions and review your case for free. We serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey including the areas of Allentown, Harrisburg, Reading and Bethlehem. Please call us at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) or complete our short contact form and a member of our firm will contact you. There is no fee unless we recover money for you.

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Attorney Advertising Materials. Wayne A. Hamilton is responsible for the content of this website. This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.

We serve clients in Philadelphia, Allentown, Harrisburg, Reading, throughout Pennsylvania and in New Jersey. Our offices are located in Philadelphia, Reading, and Bethlehem, Pa.

We work to protect the rights of clients who have been injured as a result of car accidents, defective products, unsafe equipment and machinery, workplace accidents, medical malpractice and any other serious injuries or accidents.

Galfand Berger LLP is located in Philadelphia, PA and serves clients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Bala Cynwyd, Merion Station, Wynnewood, Philadelphia, Narberth, Gladwyne, Elkins Park, Cheltenham, Wyncote, Upper Darby, Ardmore, Glenside, Lafayette Hill, Havertown, Haverford, Flourtown, Darby, Oreland, Jenkintown, Drexel Hill, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County.

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