Failure of tanning bed timer to shut off
A young woman was burned severely when she slept for over
two hours under a tanning bed, whose timer failed to shut off
power after the selected interval. A suit was filed against
the operator of the tanning salon and manufacturer of the tanning
MDL & Associates inspected the tanning bed, and reviewed
the complaint history on this model filed with the Food and
Drug Administration. (Tanning beds are regulated medical devices.)
Comparison of the product involved in this incident with the
Underwriters Laboratories file for this model indicated that
the manufacturer had substituted an electrical component of
10 amp rating in place of the approved 20 amp component. The
actual operating current was about 15 amps.
Following submission of our expert report, this case was settled
very quickly by the manufacturer.
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