Smoke Alarm Product Liability Complaint 2

Download PDF Version


Complaint for Wrongful Death

Lissett E. Batlle, as Special Administrator and Special Representative of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased, Attorney for Plaintiff.

Andrew E. Kolb, Esq., Vanek, Larson & Kolb, LLC, 200 W. Main Street, St. Charles, Illinois 60174, Phone (630) 513-9800, Fax (630) 513-9802, akolb @vlklawfirm.com, ARDC - 6270096.

NOW COMES Plaintiff, LISSETT E. BATLLE, as Special Administrator and Special Representative of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased (the “Plaintiff), by and through her attorney Andrew E. Kolb, Esq., of the law firm of Vanek, Larson & Kolb, LLC, and for her Complaint against Defendants UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, USI ELECTRIC, INC., a Texas corporation and HOME DEPOT U.S.A. INC., a Delaware corporation, states as follows:

NATURE OF THE CASE

On March 8, 2013, Lissett E. Batlle and her family were asleep in their house at 4510 Parkway Avenue, McHenry, Illinois (the “Residence”). The family suddenly awoke to a house filled with smoke and engulfed in flames. The family had only seconds to clear everyone out of the house, and unfortunately, the 12-year old daughter of Ms. Batlle, Dayana Garcia, (hereinafter “Dayana”), was unable to escape the smoke, heat and flames. Dayana perished in the house as a result of smoke inhalation. Thereafter, she was consumed by heat and covered by burns that charred her entire body.

The Residence was equipped with multiple ionization smoke alarms Ms. Batlle received from the McHenry Township Fire Protection District as part of its smoke detector giveaway program in summer / fall of 2011. The detectors were properly installed and tested repeatedly. Ms. Batlle was never informed that ionization smoke detectors are considerably less safe than other types of detectors and would not provide adequate warning to her and her family in the event of a fire. The detectors installed in the Residence did not do their job to warn the family of the smoke in time for everyone to escape alive. Sadly, Ms. Batlle lost her daughter as a result.

The faulty, deceptive and misleading nature of ionization smoke alarms is not a novelty to the industry. The slow response of ionization smoke alarms has been questioned, scrutinized and repeatedly studied and criticized since the early 1970s. Ionization smoke alarms have a known history of responding on average fifteen to thirty minutes later in certain fires than photoelectric smoke alarms. In some fires, ionization smoke alarms do not sound at all. Thousands of deaths are attributed to smoke alarm manufacturers' failure to adequately warn consumers about the delayed response of ionization smoke alarms or that there are alternative, more effective smoke alarms available to consumers. Smoke alarm manufacturers still produce and sell ionization smoke alarms and the industry continues to support their use. Juries across the country are taking a stand against these manufacturers by holding them responsible for the lives lost as a result of the faulty smoke alarms and inadequate warnings provided to consumers and users. The movement to ban these silent killers is on the rise across the United States with multiple states prohibiting the sale of these devices. The movement is gaining momentum internationally as well (most recently in Australia), and is gaining speed with each additional lost life caused by ionization smoke alarms.

PARTIES

1. Plaintiff LISSETT E. BATLLE, was appointed Special Administrator of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased, on November 1, 2013, by the McHenry County Circuit Court for the purposes of prosecuting the wrongful death claims on behalf of the beneficiaries and next of kin of Dayana Garcia, pursuant to 740 ILCS 180/2.1. Plaintiff LISSETT E. BATLLE, was appointed Special Representative of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased, on November 6, 2013, by the McHenry County Circuit Court for the purposes of prosecuting the survivorship / product liability claims on behalf of the beneficiaries and next of kin of Dayana Garcia, pursuant to 755 ILCS 5/27-6.

2. Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. is a Maryland corporation, with its principal office located in Owings Mills, Maryland and at all relevant times hereto conducted regular business in the County of McHenry, State of Illinois.

3. Defendant USI ELECTRIC, INC. is a Texas corporation with its headquarters located at 1323 Bond Street, Naperville, Illinois 60563 and at all relevant times hereto conducted regular business in the county of McHenry, State of Illinois. At all relevant times hereto USI ELECTRIC, INC. was and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC.

4. Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC. is a Delaware corporation and at all relevant times hereto conducted regular business in the County of McHenry, State of Illinois.

VENUE

5. This Court has subject matter jurisdiction with respect to this action pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-209(a)(1), inasmuch as Defendants transact business in the County of McHenry, State of Illinois.

6. Venue is proper in this Court pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-101 inasmuch as the transactions giving rise to the causes of action set forth herein have arisen and occurred in part in the County of McHenry, State of Illinois.

FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

7. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District periodically purchased smoke alarms to be distributed to residents at no charge from as early as 2009 (the “giveaway program”).

8. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District purchased the smoke alarms it distributed as part of its giveaway program exclusively at The Home Depot located at 2461 N. Richmond Road, McHenry, Illinois 60050.

9. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District repeatedly purchased the same certain type of smoke alarm, as itemized in receipts dated from May 15, 2009 to July 27, 2011.

10. The type of smoke alarms purchased by the McHenry Township Fire Protection District was the Universal Security Instruments Battery Operated Smoke and Fire Alarms (6-Pack), Model # SS-770-6CC (the “smoke alarm”).

11. That said model of smoke alarm utilizes ionization-type technology only, as evidenced by the specifications listed under the product information on The Home Depot's website.

12. That said smoke alarm was designed, manufactured and distributed by Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. and/or USI ELECTRIC, INC.

13. That on or about sometime in summer or fall of 2011, Plaintiff's friend informed her that the McHenry Township Fire Protection District was providing free smoke alarms as part of a giveaway program.

14. That on or about sometime in summer or fall of 2011, Plaintiff drove to the McHenry Township Fire Protection District during the week to pick up new smoke alarms.

15. Plaintiff arrived at the McHenry Township Fire Protection District between the hours of 10am and 11 am that day and parked near the front door.

16. When Plaintiff entered the McHenry Township Fire Protection District, a woman was sitting at a desk to the right of the front door behind a glass partition.

17. Plaintiff then asked the woman at the desk where she could receive smoke alarms from the giveaway program.

18. Plaintiff was told she needed to fill out a one-page request form that required Plaintiff to provide her name, address and the quantity of smoke alarms she was requesting.

19. Plaintiff completed the request form and was given two white smoke alarms from the woman, each in a separate box.

20. Plaintiff then drove home with the smoke alarms and took them in to her house. The smoke alarms reached the Plaintiff without substantial change in the condition in which: (a) they were manufactured and/or designed by Defendants UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. and USI ELECTRIC, INC.; (b) they were sold by Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC. to the McHenry Township Fire Protection District; and/ or (c) they were provided to the Plaintiff by the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

21. At that time, Plaintiff was living with: Rene Rodriguez, her boyfriend (they subsequently married in July 2013); Gerson Menjuvar, son to Plaintiff; Dayana Garcia, daughter to Plaintiff and Mr. Rodriguez; Christopher Rodriguez, son to Plaintiff and Mr. Rodriguez; and Kevin Morales, son to Plaintiff.

22. After Plaintiff brought the smoke alarms into her house, Mr. Rodriguez installed them between the hours of noon and 5pm the Saturday after Plaintiff picked them up.

23. To install the smoke alarms, Mr. Rodriguez had to first remove the old smoke alarms. He then read the instructions on how to install the new smoke alarms and how to test them. Mr. Rodriguez then placed new batteries in each smoke alarm and installed them.

24. After Mr. Rodriquez placed new batteries in the smoke alarms and installed them, he pressed the “test” button on each smoke alarm and each smoke alarm sounded in response.

25. Mr. Rodriguez installed one smoke alarm on the first floor on the ceiling outside the kitchen and the other on the second floor at the top of the staircase. Given the design of the house, the second floor smoke alarm was located outside each bedroom door in the center of the ceiling.

26. From the date of installation up to March 8, 2013, Plaintiff and Mr. Rodriguez regularly tested the smoke alarms installed in their homes by pressing the “test” button on each smoke alarm. The smoke alarms always sounded when tested.

27. On or about March 7, 2013, the Plaintiff and her family had spaghetti dinner together at approximately 8:30pm.

28. After dinner, the children played for a while. Plaintiff, a cab driver, went to bed sometime between 11:00pm and midnight because she had to pick up a fare at 3am the next morning, March 8, 2013. Plaintiff had turned off all appliances in the kitchen after dinner.

29. Around 10:30pm, Gerson went upstairs to bed.

30. Mr. Rodriguez, Dayana, Christopher, and Kevin all went upstairs to bed at the same time. Dayana fell asleep first, and Mr. Rodriguez stayed up with Christopher and Kevin, who were watching videos on his phone.

31. Due to Plaintiff needing to be up early the next morning, Plaintiff slept alone in her daughter, Dayana's, room that evening. Gerson slept in his own room that evening. Mr. Rodriguez, Dayana, Christopher and Kevin all slept in the room that Plaintiff and Mr. Rodriguez shared. Mr. Rodriguez slept in a queen bed with Christopher and Kevin, while Dayana slept in a twin bed by herself. The bedroom doors were made from hollow plywood.

32. At some point shortly before 1:20am on March 8, 2013, Gerson awoke in his room to a “popping” sound. When he awoke, his room was hot and he had difficulty breathing because there was smoke in his room. Gerson attempted to leave his room through the bedroom door, however, he was unable to because the door and handle were hot to the touch and there was too much smoke. At that time, he believed the house was on fire and he shouted “Fire! Fire!”

33. Gerson could not exit his bedroom through the inside door, so he was forced to climb out of his window on to the first floor roof.

34. Gerson's bedroom is located next to Dayana's bedroom, the room that Plaintiff was sleeping in that evening. Gerson rushed over to Plaintiffs window while still on the first floor roof and pounded on the bedroom window to wake her.

35. Plaintiff awoke to Gerson pounding on her window. Her room was filled with smoke, making it difficult to breathe. When Plaintiff awoke, she was able to see the bedroom wall, however, in seconds she no longer could see the wall because the room was filled with heavy smoke.

36. Plaintiff picked up her phone and tried to exit the bedroom through the door, however, due to the smoke and heat, she was unable to exit through the bedroom door. Plaintiff hurried to the window where Gerson was positioned, and opened the window. Gerson pulled Plaintiff out of the window onto the first floor roof, and when Plaintiff jumped to the deck below the first floor roof, she injured her ankle.

37. After assisting Plaintiff down to the deck, Gerson jumped down from the first floor roof and ran to the back of the house to find Mr. Rodriguez, Dayana, Christopher and Kevin.

38. Meanwhile, Mr. Rodriguez awoke from the heavy smoke that had filled his room, and heard Plaintiff and Gerson in the room next door.

39. Mr. Rodriguez immediately attempted to exit out the bedroom door, however, when he cracked the door open he saw flames and smoke downstairs. Mr. Rodriguez immediately closed the door. At this time, the room was dark and filled with heavy smoke.

40. Mr. Rodriguez had difficulty breathing due to the heavy smoke. He opened a bedroom window by breaking it so he, Dayana, Christopher and Kevin could breathe. After he broke the window, Gerson yelled up to Mr. Rodriguez, telling him to toss the children out of the window.

41. At this point, Dayana, Christopher and Kevin were still in their beds. Christopher and Kevin told Mr. Rodriguez they could not breathe. Dayana asked Mr. Rodriguez what was going on. All the while, the bedroom continued to fill with smoke and it became darker and harder to breathe.

42. Mr. Rodriguez turned to Dayana and told her that he was going to get Christopher and Kevin out of the room first. He thought Dayana was going to walk to the window while he was tossing the boys down to Gerson.

43. Mr. Rodriguez took Kevin first and tossed him out of the open window to Gerson, and next grabbed Christopher and tossed him out the window to Gerson.

44. When Mr. Rodriguez turned back to get Dayana, the room was filled with so much smoke it was impossible for Mr. Rodriguez to see anything, including Dayana.

45. Without any visibility due to the smoke, Mr. Rodriguez started using his hands to feel around the room, trying to find Dayana. After a few seconds, Mr. Rodriguez could not breathe, so he went back to the window to breathe in fresh air allowing him to resume his search.

46. At this point, Plaintiff yelled at Mr. Rodriguez to get Dayana, so Mr. Rodriguez turned back to the room, again continuing to use only his hands to feel around the room because it was impossible to see anything through the smoke.

47. Mr. Rodriguez again could not breathe, so he took a curtain in the room and wrapped it around his mouth and nose, trying to protect himself from the dense smoke. He then turned back to the bedroom, and continued using his hands and arms to try to locate Dayana in the room. At some point during his search, he burned his arm.

48. The curtain did nothing to help Mr. Rodriguez breathe in the room, so he returned back to the window to breathe before he passed out, and this time, Mr. Rodriguez fell out the window as he lost his balance leaning over the window to find fresh air.

49. At approximately 1:21am, the McHenry Police Department arrived at the scene. Officer Spohn heard shouts from the side of the house and ran over to see who was there. Officer Spohn saw Plaintiff and Gerson, and when asked, Gerson informed Officer Spohn that his sister, Dayana, was still inside the house.

50. Gerson pointed to the northwest corner of the house as an indicator of where Dayana was in the house, and that corner was entirely engulfed in flames.

51. Officer Spohn asked Gerson if he ever heard a smoke alarm and he stated no. Plaintiff also never heard a smoke alarm at any point that evening. Mr. Rodriguez heard a faint sound of the smoke alarm at some point before he fell out of the window, however the exact time he heard the alarm is uncertain.

52. Officer Spohn advised Officer Kreassig, also from the McHenry Police Department, that there was a 12-year old girl still in the house, and when Officer Kreassig observed the location of where Dayana was in the house, it was fully engulfed in flames with significant amounts of smoke surrounding it. Officer Kreassig identified that a rescue could not be attempted due to the overwhelming extent of the flames and smoke.

53. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District arrived on the scene at approximately 1:23am.

54. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District and other responding fire departments began their attempts to contain the fire.

55. At approximately 2:15am on March 8, 2013, Crime Scene Technician Matthew Voelker (“CST Voelker”) was requested to process the scene of the fire.

56. Upon CST Voelker's arrival, he noted that the house used to be a two-story house with a detached garage and the fire had consumed the majority of the residence.

57. There was a significant amount of smoke and flames at the scene. The entire second floor of the house had been destroyed by the fire, excluding two bedrooms on the west side of the house, including the bedroom Dayana was in during the fire.

58. When the fire was finally extinguished, authorities were able to safely enter the house and begin their investigation.

59. Upon entering the bedroom Dayana was in on the second floor of the residence, Dayana's remains were foundbetween two mattresses. All that remained of the mattresses were the wire frames. Her body had been completely burned, except for her back side, which had been facing down on the mattress below her. Dayana had been found with her hands in a pugilistic manner.

60. Pursuant to this investigation, it was determined that Dayana had been overcome with smoke and was unable to exit the bedroom safely.

61. At approximately 9:30am on March 8, 2013, the McHenry County Deputy Coroner, Curt Bradshaw, examined the remains of Dayana. The external examination showed over fifty percent (50%) of her body was covered in full thickness burns, down to the bones.

62. Deputy Coroner Bradshaw also tested the carbon monoxide levels in Dayana, which measured at fifty-two percent (52%). As such, Deputy Coroner Bradshaw concluded that the preliminary cause of death for Dayana was carbon monoxide intoxication.

63. The McHenry Township Fire Protection District generated a report regarding the fire incident and determined that Dayana's death was directly related to the lack of early notification of the fire, thus prohibiting her from safely exiting the bedroom.

COUNT I - SURVIVAL ACTION -
Strict Liability in Products Liability (Manufacturing Defect - Design Defect) Plaintiff v. UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., pursuant to 755 ILCS 5/27-6

64. Plaintiff realleges and incorporates herein paragraphs 1 through 63 above as if said paragraphs were stated herein in their entirety.

65. In Illinois, “all persons in the distributive chain are liable for injuries resulting from a defective product.” Hammond v. North American Asbestos Corp., 97 Ill. 2d 195 (1983). “Imposition of strict liability upon... manufacturers arises from their ‘integral role in the overall producing and marketing’ of a defective product.” Crowe v. Public Building Commission of Chicago, 74 Ill. 2d 10 (1978) (citing Dunham v. Vaughan & Bushnell Mfg. Co., 42 Ill. 2d 339, 344 (1969) ).

66. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, was engaged in the business of designing, developing, manufacturing and marketing, for ultimate sale to members of the general public, smoke alarms, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

67. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, was engaged in the business of selling to the general public, as a retail seller, smoke alarms designed, manufactured and produced by Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

68. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, purchased that Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarm from Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, and subsequently sold said smoke alarms in its store #1969 located at 2461 N. Richmond Road, McHenry, Illinois, 60050.

69. That on July 21, 2011, and for a period prior to that date, the McHenry Township Fire Protection District purchased said Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarms from Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC.'s McHenry, Illinois store, #1969, as evidenced by the receipts of sale kept by the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

70. That on or about summer or fall of 2011, Plaintiff did receive two (2) smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, from the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

71. That at the time the smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, were designed and manufactured by Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. and at all times thereafter up to and including the time of the occurrence complained of, the smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, were not reasonably safe in design in one or more of the following respects (collectively the “Defects”):

a. The smoke alarm, Model # SS-770-6CC, in unable to detect smoke in a timely manner to allow occupants of a building adequate time to escape without injury or death;

b. The smoke alarm, Model # SS-770-6CC, is not adequate and is unable to timely detect smoke without being accompanied by another smoke alarm technology to allow occupants of a building adequate time to escape without injury or death.

72. That one or more of these Defects existed when the product left the Defendant's control, making the product unreasonably dangerous because it failed to perform in the manner reasonably expected in light of the product's nature and intended function and/or because the magnitude of the dangers outweighed the utility of the product.

73. That as a direct and proximate result of one or more of the foregoing Defects, and in consequence thereof, the smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, failed to detect the smoke in the Residence in a timely manner, so as to provide insufficient warning to allow: (a) Dayana adequate time to escape the smoke that had accumulated in her bedroom and (b) Ms. Batlle to timely contact the McHenry Township Fire Protection District, which would have allowed the Fire Protection District to respond timely, thereby causing the smoke and fire to continue growing, which resulted in the pain, suffering and ultimately, the death of Dayana.

74. That as a result of the foregoing Defects, Plaintiff has sustained the following damages:

a. extreme pain and suffering experienced by Dayana as a result of smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning prior to Dayana's death; and

b. extreme pain and suffering experienced by Dayana as a result of the burns to her body prior to Dayana's death.

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff LISSETT E. BATLLE, as Special Representative of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased, in accordance with 755 ILCS 5/27-6 demands judgment in her favor and against Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. in excess of $75,000, plus costs and fees and any other such relief this Court deems just and reasonable.

COUNT II - SURVIVAL ACTION -
Plaintiff v. UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS. INC., pursuant to 755 ILCS 5/27-6

75. Plaintiff realleges and incorporates herein paragraphs 1 through 63 above as if said paragraphs were stated herein in their entirety.

76. In Illinois, “all persons in the distributive chain are liable for injuries resulting from a defective product.” Hammond v. North American Asbestos Corp., 97 Ill. 2d 195 (1983). “Imposition of strict liability upon... manufacturers arises from their ‘integral role in the overall producing and marketing’ of a defective product.” Crowe v. Public Building Commission of Chicago, 74 Ill. 2d 10 (1978) (citing Dunham v. Vaughan & Bushnell Mfg. Co., 42 Ill. 2d 339, 344(1969) ).

77. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, was engaged in the business of designing, developing, manufacturing and marketing, for ultimate sale to members of the general public, smoke alarms, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

78. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, was engaged in the business of selling to the general public, as a retail seller, smoke alarms designed, manufactured and produced by Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

79. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, purchased that Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarm from Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC., a Maryland corporation and subsequently sold said smoke alarms in its store #1969 located at 2461 N. Richmond Road, McHenry, Illinois, 60050.

80. That on July 21, 2011, and for a period prior to that date, the McHenry Township Fire Protection District purchased said Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarms from Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC.'s McHenry, Illinois store, #1969, as evidenced by the receipts of sale kept by the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

81. That on or about summer or fall of 2011, Plaintiff did receive two (2) smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, from the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

82. That at the time the smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, were designed and manufactured by Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. and at all times thereafter up to and including the time of the occurrence complained of, Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. failed to provide the following warnings (collectively the “Failures to Warn”):

a. Failed to warn, or alternatively provided inadequate warnings as to the difference between ionization-type and photoelectric-type smoke alarms as it pertains to the ability of each type of device to provide adequate warning;

b. Failed to warn, or alternatively provided inadequate warnings as to the slow response, or often lack thereof, of the ionization-type smoke alarms;

c. Failed to warn, or alternatively provided inadequate warnings as to the need for the use of both ionization-type and photoelectric-type technology for protection against all types of smoke and fires;

d. Failed to warn, or alternatively provided inadequate warnings as to the availability of alternatives types of technology in smoke alarms readily available to consumers and users that provide occupants with earlier warning of the presence of smoke; and

e. Failed to warn of the Defects.

83. That each of the Failures to Warn constitutes a manufacturing defect with respect to the smoke alarm.

84. That, at all times relevant hereto and specifically prior to Plaintiff's receipt of the smoke alarms, Defendant has been aware of, and has knowledge of, each of the facts and assertions set forth within the Failures to Warn.

85. Defendant had a duty to warn given the unequal knowledge, actual or constructive, possessed by the Defendant at the time the Plaintiff acquired the smoke alarms.

86. That as a direct and proximate result of one or more of the foregoing Failures to Warn, and in consequence thereof, Plaintiff utilized the smoked alarms (instead of choosing a different model and type) and thereafter, the smoke alarms failed to detect the smoke in Plaintiff's house in a timely manner.

87. That as a result of the foregoing Failures to Warn, Plaintiff has sustained the following damages:

a. extreme pain and suffering experienced by Dayana as a result of smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning prior to Dayana's death; and

b. extreme pain and suffering experienced by Dayana as a result of the burns to her body prior to Dayana's death.

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff LISSETT E. BATLLE, as Special Representative of the Estate of Dayana Garcia, deceased, in accordance with 755 ILCS 5/27-6 demands judgment in her favor and against Defendant UNIVERSAL SECURITY INSTRUMENTS, INC. in excess of $75,000, plus costs and fees and any other such relief this Court deems just and reasonable.

COUNT III - SURVIVAL ACTION -
Strict Liability in Products Liability (Manufacturing Defect - Design Defect) Plaintiff v. USI ELECTRIC, INC., pursuant to 755 ILCS 5/27-6

88. Plaintiff realleges and incorporates herein paragraphs 1 through 63 above as if said paragraphs were stated herein in their entirety.

89. In Illinois, “all persons in the distributive chain are liable for injuries resulting from a defective product.” Hammond v. North American Asbestos Corp., 97 Ill. 2d 195 (1983). “Imposition of strict liability upon... manufacturers arises from their ‘integral role in the overall producing and marketing’ of a defective product.” Crowe v. Public Building Commission of Chicago, 74 Ill. 2d 10 (1978) (citing Dunham v. Vaughan & Bushnell Mfg. Co., 42 Ill. 2d 339, 344(1969) ).

90. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant USI ELECTRIC, INC., a Texas corporation, was engaged in the business of designing, developing, manufacturing and marketing for ultimate sale to members of the general public, smoke alarms, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

91. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, was engaged in the business of selling to the general public, as a retail seller, smoke alarms designed, manufactured and produced by Defendant USI ELECTRIC, INC., a Texas corporation, including smoke alarms used by Plaintiff, specifically Model # SS-770-6CC.

92. That on July 21, 2011, and for a long time prior to that date, Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC., a Delaware corporation, purchased that Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarm from Defendant USI ELECTRIC, INC., a Texas corporation, and subsequently sold said smoke alarms in its store #1969 located at 2461 N. Richmond Road, McHenry, Illinois, 60050.

93. That on July 21, 2011, and for a period prior to that date, the McHenry Township Fire Protection District purchased said Model # SS-770-6CC smoke alarms from Defendant HOME DEPOT U.S.A., INC.'s McHenry, Illinois store, #1969, as evidenced by the receipts of sale kept by the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

94. That on or about summer or fall of 2011, Plaintiff did receive two (2) smoke alarms, Model # SS-770-6CC, from the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

Client Reviews
Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld.
★★★★★
Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own. Ethan Armstrong, Google User
★★★★★
This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you. Daniel Kaim, Avvo User
★★★★★
Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan! Giulia, Avvo User
★★★★★
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa, Avvo User
★★★★★
Contact Us for a Free Consultation (888) 424-5757
Chicago Office Map