Product Liability

Samsung Replacement Phone Burns In Minnesota Teen’s Hand

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 314x210 Samsung Replacement Phone Burns In Minnesota Teen’s HandA Minnesota teenager who recently exchanged her recalled Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphone for a replacement says the new device melted in her hand, burning her thumb.

Thirteen-year-old Abby Zuis of Farmington, Minn., had her replacement phone only a few days after exchanging her original phone under a safety recall amid reports that the Samsung devices could overheat, explode, and burst into flames.

On Friday afternoon, Abby was holding her phone and waiting for her siblings to get out of school when she felt what she described as a “weird, burning sensation … like pins and needles, except a lot more intense.”

Abby’s brother Andrew told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that his sister dropped the Samsung on the floor as the rubber and plastic case melted and the device burned into a “charred mess.”

“You could smell the phone through the school,” Andrew Zuis told the Star-Tribune. “It smelled like fireworks that had gone off.”

Abby was treated by her doctor for a burn on her thumb. Her father, Andrew, told the Star-Tribune that his daughter is fortunate the phone wasn’t in her pocket at the time and called it “a ticking time bomb.” He said Abby is not sure she wants another Galaxy Note 7 and may switch to an iPhone instead.

Samsung recalled about 2.5 million Galaxy Note 7 phones last month as reports mounted of the devices bursting into flames. The South Korean Tech giant initially blamed the problem on the batteries made by one of its two suppliers and said it was not using that company or its products in the replacement phones.

But the persistence of the problem in the replacement models casts doubt on Samsung’s explanation and the safety of its Note 7 devices.

Abby is one of four U.S. incidents involving Galaxy Note 7 replacement devices. Last week, a Southwest Airlines flight preparing for takeoff in Louisville, Ky., was canceled after a passenger’s replacement phone burst into flames and burned a hole on the floor of the aircraft.

On Sunday, Oct. 9, a Virginia man told The Verge that his Samsung Galaxy Note 7 replacement burst into flames on the nightstand. The man told The Verge that the phone was a replacement he received in exchange for his recalled Note 7 device at a Sprint store in Richmond, Va., on Sept. 23.

Minneapolis Star-Tribune
The Verge
KSTP Channel 5 St. Paul