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(Redline)   The "other side" of the McDonald's hot coffee case   ( divider line
    More: Interesting  
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7219 clicks; posted to Main » on 26 Sep 2001 at 1:16 PM (16 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

53 Comments     (+0 »)

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2001-09-26 01:23:27 PM  
2001-09-26 01:26:32 PM  
i understand the argument, but damn..... we need some serious tort reform in this country

lazy people are just cannibalizing companies & orgs here with crap lawsuits...
2001-09-26 01:27:49 PM  
your mama's so fat, she sued Twinkies
2001-09-26 01:28:42 PM  
Who can we sue today?
2001-09-26 01:36:25 PM  
First time she got hot between the legs in years
2001-09-26 01:54:37 PM  
Frivolous cases are truly rare - the US justice system is huge, and every single frivolous case is given national news attention, and people remember it for years. Even with the huge damages on these cases, most of the total payout goes to smaller cases.

If you make a habit of reading good news sources, you would already know that. anyone?

Tort reform is pushed by large companies that don't want to improve safety when it comes at an expense.
2001-09-26 01:56:19 PM  
So the other side of the story is that she ordered hot coffee, was sold hot coffee, spilled the hot coffee on herself, and was burnt.

OH, I see. It all makes sense now.
2001-09-26 01:58:38 PM  
Personaly I don't want to pay extra for my McFlurry because some dumb ass burns her crotch. Coffee is supposed to be hot.

Tort reform now!!!
2001-09-26 01:59:10 PM  
Frivolous bullcrap, I mean come on she spilled coffee on herself and it is the sellers fault. That argument is well beyond me, that is like suing the gun manufator for crimes commited with its product, oh forgot they did that too. What is this country coming to? Did I miss the boat on not taking responsiblity for ones OWN actions. Guess so, so much for people being honest and responsible.
2001-09-26 02:02:40 PM  
In addition to the above, I must also say that McDonald's coffee used to be nice and hot and good, shiat that was way I always got a cup or two there in the morning before a road trip cause it would stay HOT, course now post-lawsuit it is luke warm crap. DAMN YOU OLD WOMAN, DAMN YOU TO HELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2001-09-26 02:10:46 PM  
So I guess you all missed the part about her skin melting off, that's what third degree burns mean.
Plus the part where McDonald's coffee was 30-40 degrees above industry standard.
Yes, I expect coffee to be hot and I know I should be careful to not spill it on myself. But the cost of my mistake should not be skin grafts because mine melted off.

Another good link on the site was the real frivolous lawsuits, business suing business.
2001-09-26 02:11:25 PM  
Everytime this comes up I get so angry. Now when I buy coffee from a store, drive home, and then drink it, it's cold. Just because some dolt has trouble with feeding herself, doesn't mean we should lower the level of compitence needed to perform that act.

Next, that same women is going to buy a bottle of bleach, spill it on herself, then sue the company for not diluting it enough. After that, buy some oranges, get squirt in the eye while peeling them, and sue florida for growing them too acidic. And on, and on ,and on...
2001-09-26 02:19:17 PM  
Wow. These guys actually think they can treat the public like they treat the law... "We do not *technically* fit the requirements for Evil Incarnate, so therefore, no tort reform is needed."
2001-09-26 02:22:18 PM  
If she orders coffee and gets hot boiling acid, well, it's just her own fault. Why? Because that's what they told me on the General Electric Evening News.
2001-09-26 02:24:41 PM  
Just cold? Where in the hell are you getting *your* coffee? Starbucks is nice and hot and stays that way for at least 45 minutes. This lava was 180 degrees, way hotter than your Mr.Coffee makes. At that temperature you get 3rd degree burns in 5-7 SECONDS! 3rd degree burns mean your skin chars.

She asked to have about $20000 in medical expenses covered and did not want to sue. McDonalds refused so she sued.

Frivolous it wasn't
2001-09-26 02:39:55 PM  
F' her... Ya know, what kind of meat puppet puts pippin' hot coffee tween her legs and then gets shocked when she gets burned? I've bought coffee and other various hot beverages and such at numerous locales... NEVER... NEVER have I felt the urge to nestle it nice and close to my junk.

There is a price to pay for sheer stupidity, and McDonald's shouldn't be the one paying. Sure, the coffee was really hot, sure, liquid that hot can cause some serious burns.. Hell, if I stuck a cigarette into my eye it would burn, yet I have the goddamn common sense not to! This is one of those lessons learned early on... "hot, pain, bad"... Even the cavemen probably knew that shoving a hot coal in your taint will f'n kill.

Or better yet, maybe I should take that cigarette down to my local Mobile station and light my ass on fire... maybe that way I can sue ExxonMobile for selling such flamible gasoline!
2001-09-26 02:42:52 PM  

Boiling water is boiling water. there is no set REGULATED temperature for coffee nor should there be one. People like tripper are the ones who make the legal the system the way it is in the US. She deserves no money, IT WASN'T Mcdonalds fault she spilled coffee on herself. And if you look up any directions for coffee it says to add boiling water. Water boils at 212f. How was Mcdonald's negligent? was the water hoter than boiling? NO.

People like you are the reason hotels now turn down the temp of hot water so its barely luke warm. So they don't get sued if someone burns themself in the shower. Its the reason why little league pays more for insurance than all of their equipment combined. People like Tripper make me sick.

2001-09-26 02:46:02 PM  
Hot pockets!

2001-09-26 02:54:13 PM  
Maybe it's just me, but no where in the article did it mention tht the employees of McDonalds told the woman to place "the cup between her knees and attempted
to remove the plastic lid from the cup. As she removed the lid, the entire contents of the cup spilled
into her lap."

Sorry, but even my 4th grade son knows that hot coffee is, well, HOT! Personnally, anyone stupid enough to put a styrofoam cup between their knees in a car should be getting their food cut for them and using a "sippy" cup. This is why car manufacturers (sp) put 97 cupp holders in cars, in the first place.
2001-09-26 03:10:01 PM  
If only I ruled over the judicial system...

I would just say, Coffee is hot, you stupid old fark! Then I would imprison her for being stupid. Yeah, that would be much better than what really happened!
2001-09-26 03:11:43 PM  
I'm starting to believe there's a quote from a Bruce Willis film that fits every situation.

For this one, it's Mercury Rising:

"Careful, it could be hot!"
2001-09-26 03:19:59 PM  
This woman is a true pioneer. I stabbed myself in the eye a few years back and I was looking for someone other than myself to blame. Thanks to this woman, I now know that it was not my fault. The knife was .5% sharper than industry standard and nowhere on the knife does it say not to transport using your eyelids!
2001-09-26 03:50:08 PM  
Leave it to the fucking lawyers to use PDFs where plain text or html would more than suffice.

Frivolous bastards.
2001-09-26 03:58:25 PM  
This was one of the better posts ina long time. I thought much the same way as most of you, that the old woman was a dope. Now I feel differently.

Tzzhc4: Did you actually read the article? At what temperature would you consider the coffee to be dangerous? The article cearly shows that McD knew their coffee was too damn hot but didn't care. Why? Because the "taste lasts longer" (paraphrase), whihc means that they don't have to throw away stale coffee as often.

Sicksock: I don't drink coffee myself, but I do drink other beverages that I buy at McD or 7-11 etc. I buy them and I drink them. I don't drive home first and neither does anybody else. People buy coffee at McD drive-thru because it's convenient and it's on the way and they want coffee now, not later. That coffee is meant to be drank in the car on the road and it was way too hot.
2001-09-26 04:15:47 PM  
Ok, she's an idiot for putting the coffe between her legs, but THIRD DEGREE BURNS ON HER CROTCH! Damn. Good thing she's so old she wasn't using it anymore.

I know, I know, old people can still get it on, and I'm horribly insensitive, bite me.
2001-09-26 04:21:09 PM  
Mcdonalds coffee is damn hot. I don't know if they realize that people plan to put it in their mouth within 20 minutes after buying it. But that being said, if you put a cup of hot coffee between your legs, you are taking it a risk and what happens from there is your fault. IMO
2001-09-26 04:24:34 PM  
Why do people fogret to realize that these are jury cases. If the jury wasn't convinced that there was a willing attempt on the part of the company to mislead the consumer on the saftey of their prodict the jury would have said "Old woman can't handle her coffee".
I realize this article leans on the side of a trial lawyers (Since they wrote it), but come on. They convinced a jury.
2001-09-26 04:28:22 PM  
Jiggs: The only problem with your argument is that a jury is comprised entirely of people not smart enough to be able to get out of jury duty... :)
2001-09-26 04:28:55 PM  
Speaking of hot pockets...

I dont know if it was hot pockets, but it was prolly some cheap imitation hot pocket box that said..

"Careful! Hot pockets are HOT!"

And here comes one from tombstone pizza:

"Do not eat pizza when frozen."

I dont remember seeing these types of warnings before this dyke spilled coffee on herself. Now every food manufacturer in the world thinks people are morons. Thanx biatch.
2001-09-26 04:51:19 PM  
The point is that it was her mistake, but because McD's decided to keep their coffee at 180 degrees she suffered third degree burns within a few seconds of contact. If McD's kept it at the temperature most SANE places do (around 150) she would have probably suffered surface tissue burns as opposed to full thickness burns.

The other part is that she offered to settle for medical expenses, but McD's was stupid about it. Apparently the temperature they kept the coffee at was insane since after the trial they are keeping it at 155.

The burn itself was her fault, but the severity was McD's.
2001-09-26 05:24:07 PM  
Whenever I buy a coffee I assume it to be hot, possibly even 212 degrees. It is supposed to be hot.

I don't put hot things next to things I treasure most, and if I did, I wouldn't expect the rest of the world to compensate me for something I should have learned in the first year of my life.

I wouldn't even put 150 degree coffee next to my shank.
2001-09-26 05:36:24 PM  
Anyways, I imagine Ronald wishes he had payed her the 20k and lowered the temp on it's coffee. That dumb clown doesn't pick his fights too well.
2001-09-26 05:46:21 PM  
Anyone get the name of that website?

"Association of Trial Lawyers of America"

*makes sign of protection against the Evil Eye*

If there's any organization that will fight to the death against tort reform to protect their third wives, motor yachts, and Telluride vacation cabins, this is it.

Anyone who reads this as unbiased reportage deserves to be tied down and have 180 degree coffee applied to their naughty bits for five to seven minutes.
2001-09-26 06:15:20 PM  
Sounds like the only argument on the side of the "victim" is that the coffee wasn't just hot, it was *very* hot. Hell, whether it scalds me a little or burns through to my skeleton, it's still coffee and it's still my responsibility if I can't keep it in the cup.

McD's could be considered at fault if:
1. The cup was faulty and leaked
2. The employee said "Heck, you should hold it between your legs so it's nice and close to you."
3. Somewhere on the drive-thru there's a sign that says "Now serving lukewarm coffee that feels nice when it spills"

Otherwise, screw the idiot.
2001-09-26 06:15:42 PM  
I am thoroughly disgusted with all the dolts who miss the point. It is a matter of degree.

No other farking restaurant in the world serves coffee at a temperature which will burn your skin completely off in 5 to 7 seconds. Therefore, people are reasonable in assuming that McDonald's coffee should be no different.

If they had served her coffee at the temperature other restaurants serve it, she would still have had a good deal of pain, but nothing that wouldn't have healed on its own in a few days.

Most people who use bleach often splash a little on their skin from time to time. Rinsing quickly with cold water then applying lotion toll take care of it. But what if some company decided to make bleach so strong it would eat right through your skin in 5 to seven seconds? Then they put a note on the side, "Warning: Bleach is alkaline." Would it be reasonable to expect that people will take that warning to mean that this bleach is different than ordinary bleach? Obviously not.

The issue here is not that coffee is hot, and you folks whining about your cold coffee need to understand that. The issue is that McDonald's served a product that was exponentially more dangerous than the market standard, and failed to properly inform their clientele of that fact. This is obvious negligence.
2001-09-26 06:16:33 PM  
Yeah, you talk about frivolous lawsuits, but this lady had to have thousands of dollars in skin grafts done. Not only that, but once she actually asked for (a mere) $20,000 to cover medical costs, McDonald's refused and treated her like shiat. They deserved the final $400000 judgement and more. If businesses treated their customers with respect, maybe there wouldn't be as many frivolous lawsuits in the first place.
2001-09-26 06:17:03 PM  
Feel bad that Granny got burned, but still: WAAHH!
2001-09-26 06:22:03 PM  
The old bag wasn't even entitled to the $20,000. It's coffee, it's supposed to be hot, and as far as I know, no one, including McDonald's has come up with a way for making it hotter than 212 degrees without putting it in a pressure vessel.
2001-09-26 07:01:13 PM  
It's McDonalds' fault for making it NON-INDUSTRY-STANDARD. All products should be absolutely standard or face lawsuits. All products made by all companies should be precisely identical. That way, when people sue they can recover from ALL COMPANIES. What a wonderful world that would be... we'd all be rich, all lawyers would be amazingly rich, and all companies would be reduced to selling a generic grey gel that would be used for all purposes... eating, drinking, smoking, farking, and rending of human flesh from the bone.
2001-09-26 07:09:34 PM  
This is the OTHER side of the case? Hmmm...sounds exactly like the stuff I heard on the news.

McDonalds is nasty anyways. I only took my broke ass there on wednesdays and sundays because they sold .29 and .39 cent hamburgers and cheeseburgers. Now they stopped doing that, and one of their tiny cheeseburgers costs .99 cents (at least here in southern california,) fark that-

And that bit about them getting 700 complaints of coffee burns between '82 and '92- what does that average out to? Considering there are most likely 1000+ McDonalds around (just guessing) thats less than 1 complaint per restaurant per decade.

And if youve seen a McDonalds coffee cup- it says HOT all over the damn thing. It sucks that people cant just follow instructions and actually THINK before they do something. Fast food places are ALWAYS getting screwed like this- Burger King releases a toy prize that says 'ages 7 and up', some parent gives it to their 4 year old kid who chokes on it- and its Burger Kings fault?
2001-09-26 07:33:12 PM  
So what if the coffee was too hot. When she looked down at her crotch to lift the lid up off the cup, did she not think that maybe it would spill out and burn her? Evidently not. Every time i take a piss, i look down at my zipper. Before i pull that zipper up, i make damn sure that my balls arent gonna get caught up. Same principle. Same farking principle.

Maybe they should make their coffee cups like roles-royces(sp?). You cant open em up. Problem solved.
2001-09-26 07:54:24 PM  
This should have had an Asinine or Stupid tag. I mean c'mon, I wouldn't put a cup of something COLD between my things and take the cap off, much less something hot!

Now they're quibbling over temperature? Oh for--dude you get burned whether it's 120 degrees or 210! Just the degree of burns I suppose. But still--any MORON (I hope) would know that coffee is normally HOT! And you have to be careful!

Kinda reminds me of a scene from Clerks--"What do you mean there are no ice cubes? You mean I gotta drink this coffee hot?" LOL
Kat [TotalFark]
2001-09-26 08:37:58 PM  
for all o you complaini about the "insanely" hot coffee, i offer you this.

when you put a super hot liquid in a cup, the cup gets warm too. Ifthe coffee is super hot, even holding the thing between your legs can be a painful experience. When you put a hot liquid in a cup between your legs, it's still hot, but it wot hurt as bad.

so if this woman had the coffee between her legs long enough to even get situated to take off the lid, shshould have KNOWN this was hotter than average coffee.

im also assuming that this was not the first time she, or her grandson,had had coffee from McDonald's. So, she most likely KNEW the coffee was very hot.

2001-09-26 09:28:09 PM  
Let's see if this image comes through.. It's from that site's main page..

[image from too old to be available]

I wonder what kind of slant was on the article we just read? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm..
2001-09-26 09:53:37 PM  
Good point about the 700 complaints, Theman.

They've probably had more complaints about people falling out of chairs, accidently stuffing burgers in their ears, trying to use McNuggets as floatation devices, or confusing Super Sized fries with birth control devices.

Out of the millions (look at the big signs!) of customers who have bought coffees from their restaurants, only a few hundred have burned themselves badly enough to even complain. Considering that about 80% of people are morons, this tells me that: EVEN MORONS know that coffee (from McD's or anywhere) can be dangerous.
2001-09-26 10:03:52 PM  
Someone help me with this quote:

"The problem with making foolproof devices is that the fools get more and more clever every year."

It's probably not correct, and I have no idea who said it.
2001-09-26 10:52:13 PM  
Kat brings up the point I was going to make: was the woman asked during the trial if she had ever had coffee at McDonalds before that incident?

Next, I expect Norm Abram to announce during every "New Yankee Workshop," ..."don't operate power tools next to your genitals. A circular saw could take off your johnson in microseconds."
2001-09-26 11:03:17 PM  
if I burned my genitals off... I would want to sue someone! what is the right course of action after burning your genitals off? saying "boy, that was rough"..... she did it by... you know... accident.
2001-09-27 04:11:49 AM  
you folks defending mcdonald's in this case are farkin idiots. their coffee is way too hot, and i've scalded my mouth too many times to count from them. when you order a drink you don't expect to get your cheeks pierced. that old lady should own mickey d's.
2001-09-27 05:39:13 AM  
Ok, Shoeshine: you burn your mouth on McD's coffee once. Easily done.

Twice: careless.

"Too many times to count": WHY ARE YOU STILL DRINKING IT?
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