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Home Depot sued for more than $123,000 after Port Matilda house fire

Home Depot has been sued for more than $123,000 by an insurance company after one of its products allegedly caused a fire that damaged a Port Matilda family’s home.
Home Depot has been sued for more than $123,000 by an insurance company after one of its products allegedly caused a fire that damaged a Port Matilda family’s home. AP file

Home Depot has been sued for more than $123,000 by an insurance company after one of its products allegedly caused a fire that damaged a Port Matilda family’s home.

State Farm recently filed the lawsuit, which revolves around a malfunctioning Martha Stewart Christmas tree, in the Court of Common Pleas of Centre County.

Joseph and Kristin Price, of Port Matilda, holders of a State Farm policy that covered their property, bought a Martha Stewart Christmas tree, which was sold by Home Depot. The tree was plugged into a wall outlet in the living room of the family’s home on Dec. 26, 2015, when the plug malfunctioned and caused a fire, according to the lawsuit.

The Prices’ home sustained fire, water and smoke damage, and they had to make alternative living arrangements for an undisclosed period of time, according to the suit. State Farm has reimbursed the Prices for more than $122,000 in damages, though the family also lost their $1,000 deductible.

The suit alleged that Home Depot failed to incorporate safety devices in the plug to prevent its failure and that its business practices were negligent and breached the product’s warranty by selling a defective product.

“We’re working through the matter with the appropriate insurers and are just thankful no one was injured,” Home Dept said in response to the lawsuit.

Shawn Annarelli: 814-235-3928, @Shawn_Annarelli

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