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When Your Phone Explodes, That’s Not Your Fault

Negligence, while not usually thought of as a criminal act, can still lead to a lot suffering and injury, which is one of the reasons why people can be taken to court for it. Negligence is when a person or group has a basic responsibility or duty they are obligated to maintain and fail to do it, with no acceptable justification.

Negligence is derived from the word “neglect” which simply means to ignore, or not pay attention to something. So an act of negligence means that a mishap or injury occurred because someone was not doing their job properly and paying the minimum amount of attention required.

In some cases, this can lead to a minor inconvenience, such as not getting the food you ordered at a restaurant. In the case of the Samsung Galaxy S7 smartphone, however, it means suddenly finding that not only has your phone burst into flame, it is burning whatever area you placed it in along with it.

Defective Products & Threats


When a toy, food, automobile or any other product has a persistent flaw that makes itself known regularly, this is called a product or manufacturing defect. It means that somewhere along the long process of designing and building something, a mistake escaped the evaluation of the product and made it into the final, retail release that is put on stores for sale. In the case of the Korean company Samsung, they are currently in the news because of their latest phone, the Samsung Galaxy S7.

Up until now, Samsung had been having an impressive run in the smartphone sector, creating a phone that was often cheaper and at equal—or even better—quality than the popular iPhone designed by American company Apple. All that consumer enthusiasm and good will is gone, however, as their latest phone, the Galaxy S7, has very dangerous product defect that has led to both a global recall of the phone itself, as well as a cancellation of the entire line. The reason is simple; when recharging, some of these phones burst into flames, but not right away, so it’s like a bomb with no timer that can go off at any time.

The Defect Mystery


So far, Samsung has given no official reason as to why this product line in particular is prone to exploding, but since the launch of the phone, there have been over 100 provable, documented incidents of the phone bursting into flame, sometimes causing serious injury. One man received burns in multiple degrees to his legs, thighs and crotch when he placed his phone on his nightstand to recharge while he slept. He woke up to find his bed on fire. Since that accident, the phone has been placed on recall, and new, supposedly safe phones were issued to people who turned in their phones. However, later it was documented that even the supposedly “safe” phones were bursting into flames as well, and usually during the same situation—at some point after being plugged in to recharge.

While Samsung itself has yet to reveal the exact mechanics of what is causing this specific line to burst into flames, the general principles are well understood. The lithium ion that is used to hold the electrical charge of portable devices is not just a good conductor of electricity, it is liquid and highly flammable. In most cases, this is nothing to worry about, however, if the battery casing in which the lithium ion liquid is placed is ever pierced, then the substance making contact with other components in the phone is enough to cause a fire. So experts know that something in the phone’s design is piercing the battery, and eventually causing the phones to burn, but Samsung is not yet announcing what is causing this problem. There’s some speculation it may be related to inconsistencies in the manufacturing process that are putting abnormal amounts of pressure on the battery and, at some point in the future of the product’s life, applying more pressure than the thin, fragile case can take, finally piercing it and allowing the liquid to leak.

Your Options As A Consumer


When you pay good money for a product, you are far from helpless when you are victimized by the results of neglect. The American legal system is here to protect customers, whether it’s the unacceptable manufacturing defects of the Ford Pinto in the 1970s that caused many cars to unexpectedly burn, or 21st century problems like just leaving your phone to recharge, only to find that it has burned the room or vehicle you placed it in.

A product defect is not your fault, but someone is responsible, and they should be held accountable for it. If you’ve experienced injury as a result someone else’s shoddy workmanship, you deserve justice, and a personal injury lawyer can get it for you..