Australie: Cyclist gets 3rd degree burns as iPhone explodes in back pocket and melts into skin

dinsdag, 02 augustus 2016 - Categorie: Berichten Internationaal

2 aug. 2016

A Sydney man has received third-degree burns after bumping his iPhone in a very minor fall.

Gareth Clear, 36, was riding his mountain bike alone through Manly Dam on Sunday afternoon with his phone in his back pocket when his foot missed the pedal as he was beginning to move.

The resulting fall was tiny, and Mr Clear only received a few small grazes.

Moments later, after he got back up, he noticed smoke pouring from his rear and felt a searing sensation on the right side of his buttocks.

'I suddenly saw this incredible plume of smoke,' he said.

'And there was a searing pain that went along with it - as though someone had pushed a huge block of ice against my leg.

'It was pretty freaking painful.'

When Mr Clear turned around, he saw his thick biking shorts and the Skins he was wearing underneath were melting.

'The phone was stuck to my leg having melted through both my shorts and my Skins,' he said,

'It had to have been more than 100 degrees.'

As he tried desperately to remove the melting pants and the exploded phone, he burned his fingers, and instead used his fist to punch the phone off his burning skin.

The phone dislodged with a huge metallic bang before falling on the ground where smoke continued to pour out.

Mr Clear was alone at the time, with nobody around to help.

'I was on my own, writhing on the ground in agony,' he said.

However, knowing that the exploded, bent phone could do more damage to someone else if he left it, he waited for the device to cool so he could take it back with him as he walked back to Manly, alone.

'I basically sat there for about 20 minutes because I wanted to take the phone with me,' he said.

'I used two bits of wood to pick the phone up, and by the time I walked back to Manly with the phone and my bike - so probably another 30 minutes - it had finally cooled down.'

Mr Clear's burns were so bad that he was sent to the Royal North Shore burns unit for a skin graft, and will now spend the next six days attached to a machine which sits inside the graft, vacuuming out the dead, charred skin and encouraging healthy skin to grow in its place.

He said his initial concern was that the lithium from the exploded phone had tainted his blood.

'I thought I'd been poisoned,' he said.

'When I got to hospital though, that was the least of my concerns. They told me I'd lost three layers of skin.

'I said 'oh. Okay. Guess we'd better do something about that then.'

The accident has not deterred him from getting back on his bike, he says, but he'll never carry his iPhone with him again.

He wants his accident to be an eye opener to other active people who carry their phones with them.

'It's a tragedy waiting to happen,' he said.

'A mini bomb.

'Every iPhone is the same - if it happens to one, it will happen to another one. I was just lucky I was wearing pretty thick clothing and it was on my lower body.

'It could hurt someone else much more than it did me.'

Apple has contacted Mr Clear to say they are looking into the issue but have not provided any further comment.

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