Busting the Myth: Yes, Cell Phones Can Explode

January 8, 2012
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If you’ve always been scared of the radiation that your phone exudes, you need to be more aware of the possibility that your phone may explode. Over the past few years, we’ve been hearing stories of several smartphones bursting as a result of being charged too long. It is unfortunate to know but yes, they can happen. Once you start noticing that your battery pack feels a bit enflamed than usual, you need to replace it ASAP.

Here are some of the deadliest mobile phone explosions recorded:

Dec. 12, 2011: Galaxy S2 Skyrocket

An anonymous Galaxy S2 Skyrocket owner posted on XDA-Developer forum site about the incident where he heard a sound coming from his phone then felt his leg burning up. When he took out his phone, it was already transmitting smoke.

Dec. 1, 2011: iPhone 4

A week after a similar iPhone 4 fiasco in Sydney, another unit was reported to have exploded in Brazil. After being overcharged, Ayla Paulo Mota’s phone started sparking a few inches from his face. Apple has not released a statement about this incident.

Nov. 25, 2011: iPhone 4

While onboard a plane, a passenger’s iPhone 4 detonated. This was after the battery overheated. It even emitted a large amount of ‘dense smoke’ on the plane. After discovering his handset was getting extremely hot and glowing red, the iPhone 4 owner alerted one of the flight attendants immediately. The attendant immediately applied standard safety procedures to put out the glow.

Dec. 3, 2010: Motorola Droid 2

While making a routine call on his Motorola Droid 2, Aaron Embry’s phone suddenly blew up in his ear. ‘I heard a pop, I didn’t feel any pain initially, I pulled the phone down, I felt something dripping.’ The incident led to Embry’s hospitalization. He had four stitches and had his head bandaged. Because the Droid 2 has a high radiation exposure level (1.47 SAR rating), sources believe Embry might encounter long-term damage on his hearing.

Aug. 17, 2010: Nokia 1209

A 23 year old Indian was found dead when his Nokia 1209 exploded near his head. The explosion caused serious injuries on his right ear, neck and shoulder—which led to his death.

June 8, 2010: Nokia

A 16 year old teenager in Nepal lost consciousness after her Nokia cell phone erupted. The event happened while the girl was charging the phone and using it simultaneously. She died on her way to the hospital.

May 14, 2010: Samsung Rogue

After Corey’s Verizon Samsung Rogue unit exploded in his face, he had to rinse out ‘black crumbs and remnants’ from his eye for 20 minutes before he felt a burning sensation. While Verizon replaced Corey with a new phone, Samsung never returned phone calls made on the issue.

 

Aug. 28, 2009: iPhone 3GS

An iPhone 3GS suddenly exploded while a teenager was about to place a phone call. Before the explosion, the phone went completely blank. Lucky for the teen, the explosion took place inside the device and did not cause any serious harm except for a few minor headaches the following days. Prior to this, there had been 11 related iPhone incidents. Strangely though, all of them happened in France. Apple did promise to provide a free replacement for the defective unit.

Aug. 14, 2009: iPhone

An 18-year old was struck in the eye with a glass piece from an iPhone display. Prior to the screen bursting, the phone made a hissing sound. This then sent out shards of glass everywhere. The phone belonged to the teenager’s girlfriend.

 

Jan. 20, 2009: Unnamed

A  Chinese shop worker was found dead after his unnamed cell phone exploded burst on his chest. Reports said that the worker had just finished charging his phone before putting it inside his chest pocket. Another employee suddenly heard a loud explosion and found the Asian lifeless.

 

June 28, 2008: Unnamed

While his phone was connected to the wall outlet, a young man from Ghana answered a call. This led the phone to short circuit and electrocuted the boy to death. He was rushed to the hospital but was announced dead upon arrival. Several tech experts say that the phone might have been a knock-off with inferior wiring which triggered short circuit.

June 11, 2008: LG enV

While giving his dog a walk, Dan Lefman suddenly felt that there was a burning in his pants. When he took out his LG enV smartphone, he found out that it had combusted. This left him with a burnt pair of khakis. After learning about the incident, Verizon said this was the first time they ever heard of an enV model catching fire. They finally sent Lefman a new model when the negative press sank in.

June 19, 2007: Motorola

A Chinese welder had his phone near his chest when it exploded, causing him to have broken ribs. His broken bone fragments pierced his heart and caused his death. Many believe that the cause of the explosion was due to the lithium-ion battery blowing up as a result of the high temperature of his workplace. Motorola questioned whether or not he used a fake phone or battery. This marked the first recorded fatality resulting from a cell phone explosion.

Comments

  • http://www.geeknik.com/ geeknik

    Numerous places around the Web say that the Droid 2 “explosion” was a hoax.

    http://www.geek.com/articles/mobile/droid-2-was-dropped-didnt-explode-motorola-employee-20101210/

    • T wilson

      even snopes had mixed results. very real

  • Sam_stoddart1989

    my iphone has exploded!

  • Amanda

    Omg, this scares me bc I lost my phone when I was sitting on the couch and I think it fell through. it was real low battery when It fell, so I’m pretty sure its dead. Do you think it will explode?

    • Ms. Me

      R u that stupid? Just because it died doesn’t mean it will explode

      • mook

        Hahahaha love reading people’s comments….hahahaha

  • Anita

    My motorola phone exploded last night. Lipo battery looks like a fat burnt pillow after hissing and billowing smoke and popping the phone case.

  • ranchnumber51

    The connector for my phone quit working so now I’m forced to externally charge the batteries (I rotate 3). I guess it’s just as well as I feel it’s much safer to charge out of the phone, plus easy to do it contained in a charge bag in case one should melt down or explode.

  • bedge69

    Don’t let it get super hot (duh)

  • Priyan

    Indian newspapers recently reported that a young man of 23 years from the state of Orissa who was watching a video while charging his mobile phone was killed in Mangalore, Karnataka when it exploded without a warning.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.williams.9809 Daniel Williams

    Can I just say, none of this is true. This is the most hilariously poorly sourced page ever, especially since several of these examples names have already been confirmed as a hoax. It’s even funnier when you realise the page is called ‘busting the myth’

    • Amelia

      It is possible though. I’m on this page because I witnessed a phone explosion today and I want to know why it happened. The phone was charging in the front of a van. The driver wasn’t present (it was actually a van delivering ice and we were unloading it for a mass version of the ALS ice challenge!). I was right next to the van and suddenly there was a pop sound and the seats and other stuff in the front seat had caught on flames! Omg it was lucky we were holding ice buckets!

  • http://www.facebook.com/mrs.gardner1992 Anna’mae Davis

    @DanielWilliams Hey, smart one you spell realize wrong.. relise?

    • Daniel Williams

      Woah, hey, you didn’t reply properly so I only just saw this. First of all, I didn’t spell it ‘relise’, I spelt it ‘realise’.

      Second of all, I didn’t spell it wrong. If you’re going to try to criticise somebody else’s intellect, at least make sure you’re right.

      Here is a link: http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/realise

      Now, what you’ll recognise is that the English language is called that because it is the primary language of England. In England, we spell things the standard English way, because we’re crazy like that. Realise is spelt with an ‘s’. Also, so are recognise and criticise. Insane, I know. I don’t correct others every time they spell it differently, because it’s a cultural thing. But don’t be a dipshit and insult my intelligence by implying that your tenuous grasp of the English language exceeds my own.

      • Guest

        Wow, your getting a little en-flamed regarding your English ability. Reduce your temperature a bit, its not a situation anyone needs to get over heated about. Now, I’m not trying to blow smoke over your language correction but it seems as though your the type who’s head would explode if you were deemed to be in the wrong. I’m not going to burn your ear over the matter anymore but your obviously bursting to reveal your overwhelming intelligence but to be honest you sound like a prick.

      • Kev Keogh

        Wow, your getting a little en-flamed regarding your English ability. Reduce your temperature a bit, its not a situation anyone needs to get over heated about. Now, I’m not trying to blow smoke over your language correction as I agree. However, it seems as though your the type who’s head would explode if you were deemed to be in the wrong. I’m not going to burn your ear over the matter but your obviously bursting to reveal your overwhelming intelligence.

        *Nobody likes an egotistical asshole.

        • Daniel Williams

          I wasn’t being an egotistical asshole. You’re making a pretty unfair judgement about someone you don’t know based on a comment on the internet. I, like everyone else, am wrong frequently.

          I wasn’t having a particularly great day at the time, and I’ll grant you, that comment was a tad over the top. That said, this is something I get A LOT and it does get rather frustrating.

          The comment correcting my spelling was a direct response to me literally just saying that I did some further research and a lot of the things being quoted on this page were hoaxes. The ‘Hey, smart one’ made it fairly evident that it was a clumsy attempt to say ‘Yeah, well if you’re so smart, how come you can’t spell a word’. I would have happily responded politely to a polite comment. That initial response was childish and pointless. Not that my response was any more mature, but you’re being just as much of an asshole by resorting to name-calling.

          *Don’t make assumptions about someones personality, even going as far to personally insult them. I’m not ‘bursting to reveal my overwhelming intelligence’, I just don’t appreciate having my intelligence insulted for literally no reason. There’s a difference.

  • Oliver

    Please someone must protect the consumers…

  • Mahkyla Jewell

    My phone started smoking.. I smelled something burning and quickly took it of the charger… Now im scared to charge it… Will it one day blow up ? Can this be prevented in any type of way ?

  • Candy Grandpre

    The last cellphone acid burned my ear before it broke. Then, it “melted”, well…broke into pieces. My phone was already saying “Charging caused by OVP”. I wasn’t gonna renew the minutes for the next month, but I did because my family wanted to stay in contact with me.

    cell phone dangers http://educate-yourself.org/cpd/index.shtml

    The dumb AT&T technician wouldn’t honor my warranty. He said that phone overheat wouldn’t cause it to
    break, & he thought I broke it on purpose. He just pretended to be
    that way for an excuse to not honor my warranty. Cell phone companies
    are a scam!

    I vow to NEVER buy a cellphone again for the REST of my life! Also, saves me $50/month.

  • Guest

    Wow, your getting a little en-flamed regarding your English ability. Reduce your temperature a bit, its not a situation anyone needs to get over heated about. Now, I’m not trying to blow smoke over your correct language correction but it seems as though your the type who’s head would explode if you were deemed to be in the wrong. I’m not going to burn your ear over the matter anymore but your obviously bursting to reveal your overwhelming intelligence but to be honest you sound like a prick.