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Cup design makes instant soup a dangerous product

During the cold winter months, there are few things more comforting than a hot cup of soup. But that comfort can quickly turn to agony when the cup tips over, spilling hot soup on your hands, arms, and torso. Unfortunately, that is a fairly common occurrence in popular instant soup products, which come in unstable Styrofoam cups that are prone to tipping over.

Burn doctors in New Jersey and throughout the United States report seeing at least two or three patients who have been injured by these dangerous products every single week, and more often in the winter months. Children are most likely to suffer burns from instant cups of soup, as they can easily tip the cup onto themselves. This results in burns to the arms, chest, torso, and even the legs.

In addition, children are also more likely to suffer serious, lasting injuries from instant soup burns. One doctor said that about one in five children with instant soup burns ends up needing surgery, often resulting in permanent scarring and a loss of mobility in their joints.

The design of the instant soup cup makes it dangerous, doctors say. Most cups are tall, lightweight, and have an unstable base that makes them tip over very easily. In addition, the noodles in the soup tend to stick to the skin, causing more serious injury than burns from hot liquid without noodles. Soup manufacturers could easily alter the cup's design to make their product safer, but it remains to be seen whether that will ever happen.

If you or a family member has been injured by a dangerous or defective product, please contact Breslin & Breslin for a free consultation with an attorney.

Source: NPR, "Why Burn Doctors Hate Instant Soup," Mara Zepeda, Dec. 5, 2011

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