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Booth v. Black & Decker, Inc.

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
166 F. Supp. 2d 215 (2001)


Facts

The house of Jacob Booth (plaintiff) caught fire, causing damage. The fire marshal determined that Booth’s microwave caused the fire. Despite this, however, Booth brought a manufacturing-defect suit against Black & Decker, Inc. (Black & Decker) (defendant), the manufacturer of Booth’s toaster oven, claiming that the toaster oven caused the fire. To support the claim, Booth presented the expert testimony of Richard Thomas. Thomas theorized that the toaster’s power contacts had welded together, causing the fire. Thomas stated that he examined the power contacts and observed indications of melting and scoring, which were evidence of welding. Thomas did not provide a detailed explanation of his methods or provide any additional testimony. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania held a Daubert hearing on the reliability of Thomas’s testimony. Black & Decker filed a motion for summary judgment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Reed, J.)

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