People Are Suing Conagra Over Exploding PAM Spray Cans
At least eight consumers have been injured by exploding cans of PAM or similar cooking sprays, and now they're getting together to sue the maker of the products, CBS reports.
Six lawsuits—two representing couples injured at the same time—were filed against food manufacturer Conagra Brands on Tuesday, May 7. The plaintiffs' attorney, J. Craig Smith, alleges that large cans of Conagra cooking sprays like PAM contain a dangerous vent system that makes them a hazard in the kitchen. One of the victims—Maria Mariani of New York—spent a month in the hospital after a can of Conagra cooking spray next to an ignited stove burner exploded and burned 30 percent of her body.
One incident was caught on tape. A cook was working in a restaurant when a can of cooking spray on a shelf near the grill exploded and engulfed his body in flames.
All of the Conagra Brands products connected to the lawsuit are industrial-sized cans sold at bulk outlets like Costco, rather than the smaller cans available at conventional supermarkets. The explosions may have originated from u-shaped ventilation systems in the bottom of the cans, though Conagra says it phased out that design feature earlier this year.
In response to the lawsuit, Conagra issued a statement to CBS New York claiming it wasn't at fault for the explosions. "When PAM is used correctly, as instructed, it is a 100 percent safe and effective product," the statement reads.
All PAM cooking sprays regardless of size come with warnings stating that the product is flammable and cautioning users to keep it away from heat sources and not to store it anywhere hotter than 120°F. The company has no plans to recall the product, but as always, consumers should be careful when using it around the stove.