Samsung Galaxy A21 “Burned Beyond Recognition” on Alaska Airlines Flight

A photo of an Alaska Airlines airbus.
Alaska Airlines

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. A smartphone’s battery caught fire in the cabin of an Alaska Airlines flight after the plane landed in Seattle. The phone is “burned beyond recognition,” according to Perry Cooper, a spokesperson for the Port of Seattle, though its owner claims that it was once a Samsung Galaxy A21.

As reported by The Seattle Times, the Alaska Airlines Flight 751 crew used a fire extinguisher and battery containment bag to stop the fire. Still, it produced so much smoke that the flight’s passengers had to escape through evacuation slides.

A passenger on the flight, Maddy Harrison, compared the fire to a “smoke machine” in a Twitter post. They also suggest that someone sitting near the fire sustained “minor injuries,” which makes sense, as lithium-ion battery fires are often quite violent (and very, very smokey).

While the blazing phone’s owner claims that a Galaxy A21 was to blame, this has not been confirmed by law enforcement, the Port of Seattle, Alaska Airlines, or Samsung. The phone is simply too damaged to properly identify. Samsung has not commented on the incident.

Why do smartphones catch fire? Well, damaged or poorly manufactured batteries are almost always to blame. Your phone probably won’t catch fire, but there are a few steps you can take to mitigate the risk.

Source: Seattle Times via The Verge

Andrew Heinzman Andrew Heinzman
Andrew is a writer for Review Geek and its sister site, How-To Geek. Like a jack-of-all-trades, he handles the writing and image editing for a mess of tech news articles, daily deals, product reviews, and complicated explainers. Read Full Bio »

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