Lawsuit after snow globe causes fire which destroys $1m home

A lawsuit has been filed after a defective snow globe allegedly caused a fire which completely destroyed a home worth more than $1 million.

The Jumbo Snowman snow globe, which was made by Hallmark cards, is believed to have started a blaze which destroyed the northern Michigan home of Florence and Stephen Hajek. The couple owned two Hallmark card shops, so were keeping a large number of the snow globes in their garage. One was left out of the box and when the sunlight went through it, the refracted light ignited the combustible materials behind it.

The couple’s insurance company is now seeking a total of $1.8 million in damages from Hallmark and another company, both of whom will need to rely on product liability insurance if they lose the case.

The snow globes were recalled a month after the fire took place, after the US Consumer Product Safety Commission stepped in. At the time, it was ruled the snow globes were dangerous, because they could act as magnifying glasses in the sunlight, potentially causing a fire.

Rick Marvin, the Hajek’s attorney, said:

“Unfortunately, the warning came after the fire, so there is nothing the Hajeks could have done to prevent their loss.”

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