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Woman killed at gender reveal party when device explodes

On Behalf of | Nov 6, 2019 | Wrongful Death |

Residents of North Carolina may have heard about a gender reveal party in Iowa where some people accidentally created a pipe bomb, resulting in the death of a woman at the party. The incident is one of several accidents that have occurred at increasingly popular gender reveal parties resulting from attempts to make the reveal creative.

At some parties, people simply cut a cake or let balloons go that are pink or blue. However, at one party in Australia in July, a car that was supposed to emit blue smoke caught fire. A gender reveal party in Arizona in 2017 led to a wildfire. At the Iowa party, family members were trying to create an explosive device that would launch colored powder into the air. They used a homemade stand with a hole in the side for a fuse. However, they also taped the metal tubing, which created a pipe bomb.

The tubing exploded when the device was lit, and shrapnel flew. A 56-year-old woman was struck in the head and died instantly. According to reports, the piece of shrapnel then traveled another 400 feet before coming to rest. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is participating in the investigation.

When a person is killed in an accident like this one, it may be possible for family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible parties. This could be manufacturers of a dangerous object, property owners or managers. In this case, the people who owned or who were renting the premises where the accident occurred might be held legally responsible for compensation to help the woman’s family. A court would determine whether the fatality was the result of negligent actions. It might use the woman’s income potential, the emotional loss and other factors to determine what would be adequate compensation.