Apple used to sell its MagSafe technology as a way to prevent accidents. Now the iGiant faces a $75,000 lawsuit over claims its discontinued power adapter connector set a woman ablaze.
In a complaint filed on Wednesday in a US federal district court in Chicago, Illinois, plaintiff Penny Manzi alleges that early last year a defective MagSafe adapter ignited the oxygen in the mask she wore for her chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, asthma, and emphysema.
"On January 17, 2018, defendant Apple's MagSafe Adapter defectively sparked and started a flash fire, engulfing the plaintiff Penny K. Manzi's face and skull in flames," the complaint says, adding that Mazi suffered "serious and substantial personal injuries" as a result.
The complaint alleges Apple acknowledged that its MagSafe Adapter was prone to fraying, sparking, melting, and overheating through an extended warranty program in which customers who had "seen a spark" were advised they could receive a free replacement.
It goes on to blame Apple for failing to make knowledge of this supposed defect adequately known to its customers.
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Thomas Prindable, the attorney representing Manzi and her spouse Jerry Manzi, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Apple offered MagSafe Adapters on its notebook computers from 2006 through 2016, when it switched to USB-C. The company's unceremonious abandonment of MagSafe drew a fair amount of criticism by those who appreciated the easily detachable power cords. Two patent filings from 2017 by the company suggest it intends to continue developing breakaway connectors for USB-C.
In November, Apple was sued over claims its iMac and MacBook devices lack air filters, leading to dust-driven breakdowns. And last month, unhappy customers sued the iPhone maker claiming the company misrepresents device screen sizes.
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment. ®