Man claims shopping bag failure led to wife’s death

We go through our everyday lives trusting that the things we depend upon will work properly. Sometimes, though, things do not work as they should and an accident or event occurs. Most of the time defective products are just a minor inconvenience that can be overcome relatively simply, but other times the failure can lead to disastrous results. Our Houston readers might want to take special note regarding a lawsuit filed by a Nebraska man that alleges that a defective product led to the death of his wife.

According to the lawsuit, in April of 2010, the man’s wife was given a Walmart bag with two large cans of Chinese food and once large can of rice. While she was heading for her car, the bag broke and one of the cans fell on her big toe, cutting and breaking it. Even though the woman had several treatments of antibiotics and surgeries, the infection spread throughout her body and she died from her injuries in March 2011.

The man posits that Walmart did not properly instruct their employees on proper bagging procedures such as when to double a bag or use multiple bags instead of just one. He is suing Walmart, the bags manufacturer and its distributor for $657,000, along with unspecified amounts for pain and suffering, the medical bills which accrued during his wife’s treatment and loss of companionship.

None of the defendants have responded to the lawsuit, so it will be interesting to see if they do respond, and if so what their responses will be. If it is proven that the bags were faulty, this could lead to a recall on the bags as well as a possible settlement for the man. It could also lead to new training techniques for Walmart so such a tragic event never happens again.

Source:, “Man said overfilled Walmart shopping bag led to wife’s death” Chris Oberholtz, Aug. 28, 2013