Although modern toasters are built to exacting safety standards and the risk of being electrocuted is minimal under normal circumstances, the one main reason for not putting a knife in the toaster is still the risk of injury by electrocution. Here is why this is so.
Reasons not to put a knife in the toaster
The thin conductive wires used to generate the heat required to brown your toast are typically coated in mica, a mineral with exceptional heat and conductivity resistant properties to insulate the wires from the toaster’s body. This material would normally prevent injuries by electrocution even when putting a knife in the toaster, but, as it is extremely thin and brittle, it can easily be damaged or dislodged.
Should you happen to be holding the metal body of the toaster while at the same time making a connection with an exposed fraction of these wires, you could well get an electric shock. Even if you unplug the toaster before putting the knife into it, such damage could lead to one of the wires leaching electricity into the body once plugged back in. This not only leaves you at risk of getting a shock the next time you use the toaster, but could also create a short circuit that may damage the toaster beyond repair and also result in a fire.
While injuries sustained after putting a knife in the toaster are basically self-inflicted and you will have to deal with and pay for any consequences yourself, being injured by a defective new toaster is a different matter altogether and may mean you qualify for personal injury compensation. In a similar manner, you could be entitled to compensation if, for example, you were hurt by slips, trips and falls caused by a defective washing machine or injuries by fire after a new gas cooker exploded, for instance.
In essence, if any new appliance or equipment you have purchased is defective and you subsequently sustain a personal injury, be it by fire, explosions, electrocution or a slip, trip or fall, either the manufacturer or the retailer of this equipment could be held liable for your accidental injury.
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Date Published: July 22, 2015
Author: Accident Advice