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The Xbox replacement cords issued in early 2005 were considerably beefier than the original cords, and emblazoned with multiple warning labels (Source: smorty71.com).
Bereaved parents blame Microsoft, Wal-Mart for a deadly house fire that claimed an infant's life

An Illinois lawsuit alleges that Microsoft and mega-retailer Wal-Mart are at fault for a fire sparked by a faulty Xbox 360 power cord. The suit was filed in December 2006 by the family of Wade Kline, a baby who perished in the accident.

The case came to light this week when Wal-Mart filed a motion to move the proceedings from a state court to a federal jurisdiction. Along with Microsoft and Wal-Mart, an unnamed power-supply maker is also named as a codefendant. The Kline family is seeking in excess of $50,000 in damages for the fire that destroyed their Warsaw, Ill., home.

The lawsuit alleges an overheated electrical supply line for an Xbox 360 sparked the blaze, according to an article in InformationWeek, however the suit claims the fire occurred in late 2004. The magazine concludes that the product involved must have been a first-generation Xbox (not Xbox 360) unit.

Microsoft recalled 14 million Xbox power cords because of potential fire hazards in February 2005, about two months after the Warsaw fire occurred.

In a statement released by Microsoft, the company expressed sympathy for the family, "However, we are not aware of any evidence that an Xbox caused the fire."



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RE: I doubt it was MS's fault
By frobizzle on 5/31/2007 5:01:46 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed that this is one instance that is (probably) not a frivolous law suit. What I don't understand is that while Microsoft and the unnamed manufacturer of the power supply may be liable, where does Walmart's alleged liability come in here? Unless Walmart was fully aware of the potential danger and disregarded it, I do not see their culpability in this matter. Please do not construe this as liking or hating Walmart as I am ambivelent about them. However, if Walmart is found to be culpable in this suit, it raises a serious precedent; that being that any retailer can be sued for problems with any merchandise that all they do is sell. If that were the case, for example, virtually every grocery store and pet food store would facing countless law suits for the recent incidents of selling bad pet food.


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