It's not a new problem. For several years now, glass top patio tables have been suddenly exploding into tiny pieces, usually when subjected to slight variations in temperature.
“On July 11, 2011 my patio table just shattered into pieces on our deck,” Patty, of Gallaway, Ohio, told ConsumerAffairs.com. “We were having a sprinkle of rain and while I was in the shower I heard an odd noise and when I came out my table glass was in a million pieces!”
Patty is far from the only consumer having this experience. Bonnie, of Flower Mound, Tex., says she purchased a Martha Stewart Patio set just last month.
“This week the glass top exploded!” she said. “I wish I had read all of these complaints prior to purchasing, but wonder why Home Depot, K-Mart, and Martha Stewart, allow these dangerous items to continue to be sold. We have a special needs son and it was a miracle that he was not harmed.”
Another consumer uploaded the video below to YouTube, saying their in-home security camera captured a glass table spontaneously shattering.
In 2005 a class action lawsuit was filed against the manufacturer ofthe glass top tables, but the company declared bankruptcy before the case could be heard.
In May 2009 Australia's Commissioner for Consumer Protection Anne Driscoll asked to hear from consumers who have been injured by glass topped tables that may have shattered spontaneously.
““Fracturing can occur in tempered or toughened glass table tops,” she said at the time. “Tempering causes them to implode into sugar pieces, rather than shards. There may be previous damage, not visible to the human eye, leading the tables to shatter at a later stage.”