• Germany's news in English
 

Man sues teflon oven tray firm over dead parrots

Published: 11 Jan 2013 17:09 GMT+01:00

“I heard a screech and both my parrots were lying dead in their cage,” Manfred Heinz told North Rhine-Westphalian newspaper the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung on Friday.

Chicco, 16, and Coco, 12, both allegedly died when Heinz opened the oven to get out a pizza, he said.

The cause, he believes, was a new teflon-coated drip-tray which he did not realize could release fumes incredibly dangerous for birds. “I only found out afterwards on the internet,” he said.

Heinz has taken both the shop which sold him the pan and the manufacturers to a Dortmund court to sue them for €2,100 in damages, as he believes that one or both of them should have warned him about the effect on birds.

The parrots cost him €1,000 but as his lawyer told the paper, the pain he had suffered since their death was incalculable.

Whether or not the parrots died from the teflon fumes has to be proven, though and so the judge has ordered an expert opinion on how dangerous they are for birds. It does state clearly in most bird owners handbooks, however, bird cages should not be kept in a kitchen for that very reason.

This could be used against Heinz in court, in that as a bird keeper he should have realized the risks.

Heinz suggested exhuming Chicco and Coco to perform definitive tests, but judge Josef Knierbein politely vetoed the idea, “let's leave the birds in peace,” he said.

The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

17:35 January 11, 2013 by raandy
Wow, that story kept me on the edge of my chair.

Heinz ,no chance, birds in the kitchen? not a good place.
18:36 January 11, 2013 by LancashireLad
The open plan layout of many German houses means that the birds did not need to be in the kitchen.

Classic case of "something's not right and I am going to blame somebody else but me". He might have a case with the manufacturers, but nobody in their right mind would expect the shop which sold him the tray to know this.
19:37 January 11, 2013 by yllusion
I'm not defending the owner of the parrots, but depending on his house, I could imagine that during the winter the kitchen is the warmest place to keep the birds in to protect them against the cold.

And come on, why do we have to breathe fumes that are able to kill birds?
20:19 January 11, 2013 by Englishted
It is not dead it is pinning for the fjords etc ,etc.
23:10 January 11, 2013 by wood artist
Option 1: Admit I'm stupid and screwed up (perhaps)

Option 2: Find a way to blame someone else and make money doing it.

I'm pretty sure he just opted for Option 2, because it's pretty obvious he's not about to admit he's...mentally deficient.

wa
00:32 January 12, 2013 by zeddriver
Englishted

Thanks for making me smile. Brilliant comedy troupe those pythons.
16:30 January 13, 2013 by raandy
I checked this out of curiosity. This guy should have checked himself , the info is not hard to find, or asked about keeping birds in the cooking area. He wants to blame others for his ignorance, your absolutely correct WA.

C/P

Bird deaths have been documented during or immediately after the following normal cooking scenarios:

New Teflon-lined Amana oven was used to bake biscuits at 325°F; all the owner¦#39;s baby parrots died [3] [4].

Four stovetop burners, underlined with Teflon-coated drip pans, were preheated in preparation for Thanksgiving dinner; 14 birds died within 15 minutes [2] [5].

Nonstick cookie sheet was placed under oven broiler to catch the drippings; 107 chicks died [2].

Self-cleaning feature on the oven was used; a $2,000 bird died [5].

Set of Teflon pans, including egg poaching pan, were attributed to seven bird deaths over seven years [6].

Water burned off a hot pan; more than 55 birds died [7].

Electric skillet at 300°F and space heater were used simultaneously; pet bird died [8].

Toaster oven with a non-stick coating was used to prepare food at a normal temperature; bird survived but suffered respiratory distress [9].

Water being heated for hot cocoa boiled off completely; pet bird died [10].

Grill plate on gas stove used to prepare food at normal temperatures; two birds died on two separate occasions [11].
10:09 January 14, 2013 by mitanni
Bird owners should, of course, know about this. There are tons of things in the house that are harmless to humans but can kill various pets.

But I doubt it was the Teflon. PTFE toxicosis requires decomposition, and that requires temperatures above 530F
12:36 January 15, 2013 by aruntutu
I thought frivolous cases were a American home-grown concept... Seems like it is spreading its wings all over... True, there might have been fumes given out, true they (may) not have been too healthy to inhale, but things like "he pain he had suffered since their death was incalculable.".... I mean talk about drama... They need to call the guys in Mumbai for a shot at the story of a lifetime in Bollywood, drama and all... I don't think he'll cut in Hollywood...

His stupidity and he thinks he should milk off others... Shameless to say the least..
Today's headlines
Auschwitz defendant admits 'moral guilt'
Oskar Gröning in court in Lüneburg on Tuesday. Photo:DPA

Auschwitz defendant admits 'moral guilt'

Former SS officer Oskar Gröning, dubbed the "accountant of Auschwitz," asked for "forgiveness" over his role in mass murder at the Nazi death camp, as his trial began on Tuesday. READ  

Second World War still key to German identity
US army tanks roll into Cologne. Photo:DPA

Second World War still key to German identity

Seventy years after the end of the Second World War, Germans still feel that they deal with its legacy in everyday life, a survey published on Tuesday shows. READ  

Drugged teenager in high speed Munich chase
Photo: DPA

Drugged teenager in high speed Munich chase

Police in Munich reported on Monday that they had caught a 16-year-old who raced through the city at up to four times the speed limit, on drugs, in a car with stolen number plates – and without a valid driver's license. READ  

How NHS reform will cost Brit expats dear

How NHS reform will cost Brit expats dear

British people living in other European countries could find themselves forced to take out private health insurance due to a clampdown on expats using the country’s National Health Service (NHS).  READ  

Euro parliament leader warns of new shipwrecks
Refugees being picked up by a German freighter in January. Photo: DPA

Euro parliament leader warns of new shipwrecks

“If we don't act now, we'll experience more tragedies” like the one that killed 950 people off the Libyan coast last weekend, European Parliament president Martin Schulz warned on Tuesday. READ  

Arsonists attack Bundestag yet again
The Paul-Löbe Haus, where much parliamentary work is carried out. Photo: DPA.

Arsonists attack Bundestag yet again

Unknown attackers threw a Molotov cocktail at a Bundestag (German parliament) building early on Tuesday morning, the third time within five months. READ  

Train drivers' strike to hit Wednesday, Thursday
Train drivers' union (GDL) leader Claus Weselsky (l) on a picket line in March. Photo: DPA

Train drivers' strike to hit Wednesday, Thursday

Train drivers will return to the picket lines on Tuesday afternoon after negotiations with rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) collapsed on Friday. Passenger services will be hit on Wednesday and Thursday. READ  

Five things to know about weed in Germany
Photo: DPA

Five things to know about weed in Germany

The stoner holiday of 4/20 may not be as popular in Germany as in its homeland the United States, but weed is nonetheless a hot topic in Europe’s largest economy. For the hemp holiday on Monday, The Local shares five things you should know about weed in Germany. READ  

Migrant boat tragedy
Merkel: We must stop migrant traffickers
Refugees on the deck of an Italian navy ship in April 2014. Photo: DPA

Merkel: We must stop migrant traffickers

Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday that "everything" would be done to prevent more migrants dying in the Mediterranean in their quest for a better life in Europe. READ  

Salafists giving kids martial arts lessons
Police arrest a terror suspect in Mönchengladbach in January. Photo: DPA

Salafists giving kids martial arts lessons

Members of a Salafist group in western Germany have been giving lessons in martial arts to local kids, police reports revealed on Monday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
A Greek learning politics in Germany
Features
The battle of the "Gates of Berlin"
National
Germany's favourite baby names of 2014
National
Germany's 'very poor' lobbying record
National
VIDEO: Mario Draghi suffers anti-ECB confetti attack
Politics
Merkel's 15 years at the top of German politics
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
10 things you didn’t know about Zagreb (and why you should go)
Features
Spice up asparagus season with The Local's serving suggestions
Sponsored Article
What expat parents should ask before choosing a school
Travel
Lowest of the low: how woman exploited Germanwings crash
Sport
Football and the €30,000 firework
Technology
Why scientists oppose killer robots
National
Germanwings co-pilot 'searched suicide info'
Technology
Electrifying 'Ostalgia'
National
Which city is Germany's worst for drivers?
National
'Cannibal cop' gets 8 years
Can the 'nightmare' of a pilot downing a plane be prevented?
National
LIVE: Co-pilot suspected of crashing plane
Pupils mourn lost classmates
National
Freed after 25 years on death row
National
Cologne Cathedral returns from space
Features
Paddy's Day, Berlin style
Is your workload 'out of control'? You're not alone...
National
Why east Germans are happy to get it on on camera
National
What would you do with a 250-year-old pretzel?
Features
Just why is the German flag Schwarz, Rot, Gold?
Business & Money
Getting German workers and bosses thinking positive
National
Uplifting thoughts to get you through the last week of winter
National
Who wants the Olympics more - Hamburg or Berlin?
National
Last-minute drama of Germany's Eurovision 2015 entry
National
German photographer takes world's top prize
Features
Meet the woman getting Germans to drink more – and better – beer
Gallery
Get inspired for International Women's Day with German heroes
Green party proposes first-ever cannabis legalization plan
Gallery
In pictures: Germany's seven most livable cities
National
Singapore canes Germans for train graffiti
Politics
Surprise! Germans love feeling like they run the EU
Politics
Anger over plan to show women what men earn
Travel
Munich tram fans bicker over new bell
Features
Kafka: puzzling translators 100 years on
Business & Money
France or Germany: Which country really is the best country to work in?
Photo: Police
Rhineland
Student driver crashes tank into family garden.
Photo: DPA
Politics
There was a notable absence at the Anti-Semitism Commission
National
How Dresden bombing still divides Germany, 70 years on
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Take a cute break with this gallery of baby animals
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

7,165
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd