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Samsung Smartphone Battery Catches Fire, Injures Owner

By - Source: AP | B 32 comments

Battery from a 2011 Galaxy Note.

A battery of a 2011 Samsung Galaxy Note model recently exploded in its owner's pocket, with the manĀ  suffering burns.

He was walking around with the Samsung device in his pocket when the battery caught on fire. The man received second-degree burns and a one-inch wound on his thigh. Officials stated that the battery was notĀ  inside the phone when it exploded.

The incident itself took place in South Korea. A local newspaper said the battery was from the original Galaxy Note, but the Associated Press stressed that it remains unconfirmed.

The AP said the incident marks the second time during the last year when a Samsung battery has caught fire in South Korea. The company, however, confirmed that it won't be planning an investigation.

While they're quick in terms of charging, lithium-ion batteries have been known to malfunction due to heat. Last year, a phone battery caught fire in a man's back pants pocket at Defcon, while a man was killed in 2009 as an exploding phone severed his neck artery.

Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has been grounded until 2014 because of on-board fires stemming from lithium-ion batteries. Lenovo, Nokia, Dell, Apple, Panasonic, Sharp, Toshiba, Hitachi and Fujitsu have previously pulled products from retail stores due to overheating batteries.


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Top Comments
  • 19 Hide
    bucknutty , February 7, 2013 4:25 PM
    What else was in his pocket at the time? I can make any battery catch fire or explode with a bit of steel wool and some pocket lint.
  • 18 Hide
    catfishtx , February 7, 2013 4:32 PM
    Why was the battery not in the phone? If it indeed was not and there was also loose change in the pocket, that could definitely lead to a situation where the battery fails if coins managed to touch the battery terminals.
  • 14 Hide
    dauntekong , February 7, 2013 5:13 PM
    "Officials stated that the battery was not inside the phone when it exploded."

    Urrr so its technically not Samsung's fault but his own. Leaving the battery exposed to static friction in the pocket along with lose lints is an accident waiting to happen.
Other Comments
    Display all 32 comments.
  • 0 Hide
    punahou1 , February 7, 2013 4:25 PM
    I never had these problems with my Motorolla brick...
  • 19 Hide
    bucknutty , February 7, 2013 4:25 PM
    What else was in his pocket at the time? I can make any battery catch fire or explode with a bit of steel wool and some pocket lint.
  • 6 Hide
    tokencode , February 7, 2013 4:26 PM
    Wow, a guy was killed by his smart phone? I might start using a Bluetooth....
  • 18 Hide
    catfishtx , February 7, 2013 4:32 PM
    Why was the battery not in the phone? If it indeed was not and there was also loose change in the pocket, that could definitely lead to a situation where the battery fails if coins managed to touch the battery terminals.
  • 10 Hide
    NightLight , February 7, 2013 4:44 PM
    probably loose change or keys.
  • 2 Hide
    A10K , February 7, 2013 4:48 PM
    It shouldn't be a simple matter of shorting; the dangers of lithium-ion batteries are well known and as a result most battery packs incorporate a protection controller that automatically shuts down the pack if discharge exceeds a certain current (preventing an extended short). It also prevents overcharge and over-discharge, and overheating. Its put inline with the terminals. This is probably a case with a faulty protection PCB, or one that was poorly implemented.
  • 1 Hide
    digiex , February 7, 2013 4:48 PM
    Quote:
    Samsung Smartphone Battery Catches Fire,


    So does the Boeing 787 Dreamliner... so?
  • -6 Hide
    jaber2 , February 7, 2013 4:49 PM
    fake
  • 0 Hide
    robochump , February 7, 2013 5:07 PM
    I agree, most likely change in the pocket interacted with the battery to cause a short and poof! As for the battery not being in the phone, was the battery dislodged while walking? Like the battery cover popped off? Guess I will have to read elsewhere for more details.
  • 10 Hide
    nukemaster , February 7, 2013 5:12 PM
    bucknuttyWhat else was in his pocket at the time? I can make any battery catch fire or explode with a bit of steel wool and some pocket lint.

    ahh steel wool + 9 volt battery = nice little fire.
  • 14 Hide
    dauntekong , February 7, 2013 5:13 PM
    "Officials stated that the battery was not inside the phone when it exploded."

    Urrr so its technically not Samsung's fault but his own. Leaving the battery exposed to static friction in the pocket along with lose lints is an accident waiting to happen.
  • 1 Hide
    danwat1234 , February 7, 2013 5:30 PM
    bucknuttyWhat else was in his pocket at the time? I can make any battery catch fire or explode with a bit of steel wool and some pocket lint.


    Should have a protection chip that bricks the battery if it is short circuited. Even those super cheap $3 shipped batteries on Ebay usually have the protection chip. Once you short it with a paperclip or whatever, it's now an open (time to recycle the battery) and the battery didn't even get warm.
    So something isn't right if the battery can get hot by shorting the terminals. A screw driver through the battery I can understand. It's quite fun.
  • 8 Hide
    g00fysmiley , February 7, 2013 5:31 PM
    battery out of the phone and catches fire in his pocket... tha tis liek complaining that toyota wrecked your car when you took out the brakes and put them in the trunk then can't stop at a red light .. sure they were in the area but not where it was suppossed to be...
  • 0 Hide
    jn77 , February 7, 2013 5:36 PM
    And other countries complain about dumb the standards are to sell products in the US (not that there haven't been issues) but the frequency of issues like this is less than in other parts of the world because of said standards.

    I would have to argue that his car keys jumped the terminals on the loose battery causing a spark ending in a fire.
  • 2 Hide
    olaf , February 7, 2013 5:36 PM
    Yeah you short out a high capacity battery and it catches fire , really who who'd have thought (inserts sarcasm note for morons to understand) Any battery , LI-ion or not catches fire if it has sufficient power, try cutting a live wire with a pair of insulated wiercutters see how nicely it melts the wiercutters.
  • -2 Hide
    ericburnby , February 7, 2013 5:59 PM
    Wow, the only two intelligent comments about batteries having built-in protection get down voted. Are people here really that stupid? It's extremely unlikely you could short the battery to make it explode.

    People who won't accept that Samsung could have a faulty battery so they blame it on the person. Pathetic.
  • 11 Hide
    stingstang , February 7, 2013 6:39 PM
    ericburnbyWow, the only two intelligent comments about batteries having built-in protection get down voted. Are people here really that stupid? It's extremely unlikely you could short the battery to make it explode.People who won't accept that Samsung could have a faulty battery so they blame it on the person. Pathetic.

    And really, how often are tech problems related to user-error, right?
    ...Oh wait. That's most of them.
  • 0 Hide
    jojesa , February 7, 2013 7:10 PM
    catfishtxWhy was the battery not in the phone? If it indeed was not and there was also loose change in the pocket, that could definitely lead to a situation where the battery fails if coins managed to touch the battery terminals.

    I should be more careful...I keep an extra charged battery in my shirt pocket and I have a Samsung phone.
  • -4 Hide
    halcyon , February 7, 2013 7:42 PM
    Guys...just pretend this was an Apple product's battery and not a Samsung product's. I know, I know...but just pretend. Would all the above comments be the same?
  • -1 Hide
    greghome , February 7, 2013 7:55 PM
    So.......this is why Apple doesn't have detachable batteries on anything anymore :p 
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