PA Family Sues Walmart, Jetson Electric Bikes After Fire
Court documents said a Pennsylvania couple is suing Walmart and Jetson Electric Bikes after their two daughters died in a house fire.
Jennifer Kaufman and her husband, Damien Kaufman, say an April 1 fire in their Hellertown home broke out when their Jetson Rogue Hoverboard caught fire while shipping. According to the lawsuit, the flying board, which was purchased from Walmart, caught fire in their 10-year-old daughter’s room.
The suit, filed Sept. 21 in US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, says Jetson and Walmart knew or should have known about the defects and electrical hazards of the hoverboards, but did not acknowledge those risks. Instead, the companies continued to sell the product, engaging in “reckless, deliberate, fraudulent and/or outrageous behavior” that contributed to the fire, the lawsuit says.
Walmart expects its suppliers to “provide safe, high-quality products that meet all applicable laws and regulations,” a company spokesperson told McClatchy News.
“Our thoughts go to the Kaufman family for their loss,” the spokesperson said. “We will respond to the court as appropriate after we are informed of the complaint.”
Jetson did not immediately respond to McClatchy News’ request for comment.
At the time of the fire, Jennifer Kaufman escaped from her first-floor bedroom window, according to court documents. Kaufman’s daughters, 15-year-old Brianna Bayer and 10-year-old Abigail Kaufman, were on the second floor.
According to the lawsuit, Damien Kaufman was in the garage of the house when the fire broke out, and despite his attempts to break into the house he was unable to save his daughters. Instead, Damien Kaufman and his wife stood in their front lawn and watched helplessly as their daughters trapped inside waiting for rescue.
The two girls were rescued from the house and pronounced dead soon after, the lawsuit says.
Lawyers for Jennifer Kaufman or Damien Kaufman did not immediately respond to McClatchy News’ request for comment.
The two are seeking reparations, including medical and funeral expenses, damages to their home, and lost wages.
Hellertown is about 55 miles northwest of Philadelphia.
This story was originally published September 21, 2022 4:58 pm.