Exploding mobile battery suspected in S Korea fatality
By Lester Haines Published Wednesday 28th November 2007 16:30 GMT
A South Korean man was this morning found dead at work, apparently killed by an exploding mobile phone battery, AP reports.
The victim, identified only by his surname Suh, was discovered at a quarry in Cheongwon, 135 kilometres (85 miles) south of Seoul with "his mobile phone battery... melted in his shirt pocket", according to a police official. The unnamed official added: "We presume that the cell phone battery exploded."
Doctor Kim Hoon, who examined the body, explained: "He sustained an injury that is similar to a burn in the left chest and his ribs and spine were broken. It is presumed that pressure caused by the explosion damaged his heart and lungs, leading to his death."
Police said the mobile in question was made by LG. A company official confirmed this, adding that LG "would not comment directly on the incident because the cause was not confirmed". He did, however, describe such an explosion as "virtually impossible". ®
Apparently computers are burning and exploding, too, though the computer problem seems to be a bit more common.
Another Dell laptop has burst unexpectedly into flames. This one, an Inspiron 9200, spontaneously combusted this week in Columbus, Ohio. The blaze was caught on camera.
According to a report on website ConsumerAffairs.com, the laptop went up "like fireworks", its owner, Douglas Brown, claimed. Brown called the emergency services then grabbed his camera and took a few snaps of the infernal Inspiron:
What's not yet clear is whether Brown's laptop is one of those covered by the major battery replacement programme Dell put in place a year ago. Certainly, some Inspiron 9200s were included. If Brown's machine was, it doesn't appear from the ConsumerAffairs.com story that he had returned his original battery to Dell.
If he had - or if his 9200 was not one of those covered by the recall - it raises the possibility that a lot more laptops are going to have to have their batteries checked. Given recent claims made by Japanese boffins that the design of lithium-ion power cells is inherently "flawed", perhaps they should be in any case.
Thanks to Register Hardware reader Emanuel for the tip
Georgia Man's Dell Laptop Bursts into Flames
Latest in a series of laptop fires
By Truman LewisConsumerAffairs.Com August 24, 2007
A computer network administrator at a Columbus, Georgia, hospital is the latest consumer to encounter the flaming laptop syndrome.
Douglas Brown said his Dell 9200 wide-screen laptop's batteries exploded into flames, it "looked like fireworks which would have been cool had it not been in my house."
Brown called 911 and the fire department responded with two pumpers, a ladder truck, the HAZMAT unit, an ambulance and the battalion chief.
"Way too much manpower for one little laptop," he said, but "I guess it sounded like it was more then it really was" to the 911 dispatcher.
It's the latest in a series of fires and meltdowns involving the lithium-ion batteries used in laptops, cell phones and other electronic devices.
Last year, a man in South Venice, Fla. blamed his Dell laptop for burning down his house. Earlier this year, a Macbook was blamed for a house fire in Australia.
In one of the most celebrated cases, a Dell laptop was blamed for setting fire to a pickup truck parked in a remote mountainous area in Nevada last August. The fire not only destroyed the truck but set off a box of ammunition its outdoorsman owner had left in the glove compartment while he went fishing.
Dell and other computer makers have recalled millions of batteries. It could not immediately be determined whether Brown's laptop was among the recalled units.
Brown said he called Dell and spoke with a representative named Cory who was "very nice and professional" but who then transferred him to someone who was not.
Brown said he asked the next service rep "who was going to pay for the damages to my house and the HAZMAT bill and (she) asked me if I had insurance.
"I would have thought Dell would have had a better answer then that," Brown said. "After all the fire was caused by their computer."
Brown said the laptop is now sitting the middle of his driveway.
If you check the link to the last one, it has a huge list of links related to laptop fires and explosions. From houses burning down to cars burning up, all due to laptop fires.