This evening on the local news a story caught my attention as one who follows technology and gadgets. The headline? “Cedar Hill man injured when cell phone screen shatters.”
According to the story (video below), a North Texas man was talking on his cell phone, identified by our Brad and Adam as a Motorola Droid 2 from Verizon Wireless, this morning, when the device exploded.
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The man, Aron Embry, had finished a call on the device purchased two days prior, when he said he heard a loud “pop.” At that point his ear began to bleed profusely, and he was rushed to the ER at Dallas’ Parkland Memorial Hospital.
Thankfully Embry only needed four stitches and suffered no hearing loss. No word on whether the hearing test consisted of Embry being asked, “Can you hear me now?”
On a bright note? the phone still appears to be functioning, and its battery was intact.
A scary situation for Embry and one that cell phone users should take note of as this isn’t the first instance of an exploding phone causing injury or even death. Moreover, exploding cell phones are not limited to a particular brand or region of the world.
In August, a 23-year old Indian man was killed when his Nokia 1209 exploded. In May, a man’s Samsung Rogue from Verizon exploded in his face, causing eye injuries. And not even Apple’s immune from exploding cell phones. Over a dozen cases of exploding iPhone 3GS devices around the world were reported last year alone.
Concerning the Droid 2, Motorola advises in part:
“Motorola recommends you always use Motorola-branded batteries and chargers. The warranty does not cover damage caused by non-Motorola batteries and/or chargers.Caution: Use of an unqualified battery or charger may present a risk of fire, explosion, leakage, or other hazard. Improper battery use, or use of a damaged battery, may result in a fire, explosion, or other hazard.”
Addressing the issue on their own, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued warnings for all cell phone users. Among the tips released by the CPSC were making sure your cell phone is compatible with your battery. Also, it warned users to keep batteries away from metal objects while phones are not in use. Phones should also be kept away from liquids and users should be careful that they do not overheat.
Have you or someone you’ve known had a cell phone explode? What type of phone was the culprit and did the explosion occur through no fault of the owner?