As readers in the Billings area know, consumers are injured every day by defective products. Sometimes the incidents are minor, but other times they are serious and even deadly. Manufacturers have an obligation to guarantee that the products they introduce into the stream of commerce are not dangerous, especially if the products are likely to be used daily in people’s homes.

Montana residents may be surprised to hear that one of the most dangerous products on the market these days is a dishwasher. In fact, consumers across the United States have been filing complaints about dishwashers catching fire. While reports have not zeroed in on the exact cause of the fires, some investigators and consumers have blamed dishwashers for significant property damage and even death.

In 2011, hundreds of complaints related to dishwashers were filed with a government consumer-safety site. At least half of the complaints reported smoke and fire. With the severity of the claims, one might expect manufacturers to take the incidents more seriously, but in many cases, companies have offered nothing more than coupons and discounts.

The seriousness of the problem demands consumer attention and awareness. Dishwasher fires have been caused extensive property damage and serious personal injuries, yet no recalls have been issued., a website run by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, has identified a number of brands with a sizeable amount of complaints.

If Montana residents are planning on purchasing a new appliance, they should review the product information through consumer-safety sites like And if people are injured because of a defective product, consulting with a product liability attorney may be a solid first step toward obtaining due compensation and holding responsible manufacturers accountable.

Source:, “Dishwasher Dangers? Fires Prompt Concern,” Feb.6, 2012