Wyoming Co. Board of Education files cross-claims over alleged laptop fire

By John O'Brien | Dec 5, 2013

PINEVILLE – The Wyoming County Board of Education says that if it is held responsible for a school-issued laptop that allegedly caused a fire at the home of an employee, the makers of the computer should pay.

The Board asserted cross-claims against Hewlett-Packard, Sony and Pomeroy IT Solutions on Nov. 20 in a lawsuit brought by Daniel and Marcia McKinney. It did so in an answer to the complaint that denied the allegations against it.

“Without any breach or fault of this answering Defendant Wyoming County Board of Education contributing thereto; and if any judgment is recovered herein by the Plaintiffs against this answering Defendant, who will be damaged thereby, Defendants Hewlett-Packard; and/or Sony Corporation; and/or John Doe Company…; and/or Pomeroy IT Solutions Sales Company are or will be responsible in whole or in part,” the cross-claim says.

The Board is represented by Chip E. Williams of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe.

The plaintiffs allege on Feb. 15, 2011, they sustained serious injuries and damages when their home caught fire in Wyoming County.

According to the complaint, Daniel McKinney’s employer, Wyoming County Board of Education, provided him with an HP laptop computer.

The complaint states the laptop malfunctioned, catching fire to the home, causing damages and injuries.

Prior to the fire, recalls had been issued because the laptop was a proven fire hazard, the complaint states. The plaintiffs also contend that the defendants received notice of the recalls, but failed to protect the plaintiffs from the danger.

The plaintiffs are seeking an undisclosed amount in damages and are representing themselves.

From the West Virginia Record: Reach John O'Brien at jobrienwv@gmail.com.

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