In that case, the Plaintiff, an Oklahoma City dental hygienist, was traveling with her husband to Hot Springs, Arkansas. Id. at *1. As Mrs. Hammond was preparing to iron a wrinkled garment, she reached for the clothes iron. The court recounted what followed:
As Plaintiff slid the clothes iron’s plug into the socket in her hotel room, the plug exploded in her right hand and a ball of fire shot out from the wall. As a result of the explosion, plaintiff’s hand was charred and her hand and arm were electrocuted, causing neurological damage.
[a] supplier of a product is subject to liability in damages for harm to a person or to property if: (1) The supplier is engaged in the business of manufacturing, assembling, selling, leasing, or otherwise distributing the product; (2) The product was supplied by him or her in a defective condition that rendered it unreasonably dangerous; and (3) The defective condition was a proximate cause of the harm to a person or to property.
Ark.Code. Ann. § 4-86-102(a) (2009).
(6)(A) “Supplier” means any individual or entity engaged in the business of selling a product, whether the sale is for resale or for use or
(B) “Supplier” includes a retailer, wholesaler, or distributor and also includes a lessor or bailor engaged in the business of
leasing or bailment of a product.
(C) “Supplier” shall not include any licensee, as the term is defined in § 17-42-103(10), who is providing only brokerage and sales services under a license;….
Ark.Code Ann. § 16-116-102(6) (2009).
The Hammond court’s analysis is sound. Hotels simply do not place incidental products such as clothes irons or toothpaste into the stream of commerce. It’s logical to conclude that they are not sellers or suppliers. As such, I really need to stop thinking of hotels as a supplier of my necessities or better yet, I need to start double-checking my luggage when I travel!