Exploding Cell Phone Kills Welder In China - InformationWeek

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Exploding Cell Phone Kills Welder In China

High temperatures in the plant where the welder worked were said to have contributed to the explosion.

A welder in China has died after a cell phone in his chest pocket exploded, breaking his ribs and blasting bone pieces into his heart, according to Chinese media reports.

The worker, identified as 22-year old Xiao Jinpeng, was working at an Iron Ore plant in China's Gansu Province. High temperatures in the plant where the welder worked were said to have contributed to the explosion. Xiao was rushed to a local hospital emergency room where he was declared dead.

"We haven't ruled out the possibility that quality problems with the battery induced the tragedy, but other causes remain possible," said Bai Shiziong, commissar at a regional public security bureau, according to the Shanghai Daily newspaper.

The welder was carrying a Motorola mobile phone, and the company was reported to be sending a team to the area to investigate the incident.

In a statement, a Motorola press representative in China said: "Up to now, preliminary evidence suggests it is highly unlikely that a cell phone caused this accident. We are working with the Chinese authorities to determine and investigate the root cause."

Another Motorola representative told Chinese media sources that exploding cell phone batteries are rare and that Motorola was taking the incident seriously.

A few years ago, there were several reports of battery explosions in cell phones, but no serious injuries were reported.

The precise model numbers of the phone the welder was carrying haven't been reported. The Shanghai newspaper reported that the plant had paid about $18,000 to Xiao's family. The incident occurred June 19, but wasn't widely reported until this week.

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