iPhone 4 burns in flight

iPhone 4 burns in flight

Summary: An iPhone began glowing red and emitting dense smoke on flight on a flight from Lismore to Sydney last week.

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Passengers on a flight from Lismore to Sydney last Friday saw black smoke in the cabin, only to find that the source was a passenger's Apple iPhone 4, which had seemingly combusted mid flight.

The iPhone began glowing red and emitting dense smoke on flight ZL319 last week, according to Regional Express (REX).

The iPhone had to be extinguished by the cabin crew.

"In accordance with company standard safety procedures, the flight attendant carried out recovery actions immediately, and the red glow was extinguished successfully. All passengers and crew on-board were unharmed," REX said in a statement.

The incident has been referred to the Transport Safety Bureau and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for investigation, with the iPhone handed over as part of the inquiry process.

ZDNet Australia contacted Apple for comment this morning, but no response had been received at the time of publication.

While the cause of the apparent combustion is still unclear, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority recently issued a warning over lithium batteries in-flight. The safety authority limits the carriage of batteries to two, with a requirement for them to be placed in separate bags to protect the terminals and the battery from short circuiting.

Topics: iPhone, Hardware, Mobility, Smartphones

Luke Hopewell

About Luke Hopewell

A fresh recruit onto the tech journalism battlefield, Luke Hopewell is eager to see some action. After a tour of duty in the belly of the Telstra beast, he is keen to report big stories on the enterprise beat. Drawing on past experience in radio, print and magazine, he plans to ask all the tough questions you want answered.

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Talkback

49 comments
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  • Hands-free

    What do you suppose happens if you take your iPhone with you in a Chevy Volt?
    Robert Hahn
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @Robert Hahn - If you take an iPhone with you in the Volt, the Volt will roll over without any warning, turn bright red, and then spontaneously combust; but, don't worry, the iPhone will be okay.
      bitdoctor
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @Robert Hahn As an iPhone and Volt owner, I can assure you they work well together. :-)
      JoeFoerster
  • Wrong Pocket Alert!

    The passenger had his phone in the wrong pocket.
    Please call the genius(es) to know which pocket to put the phone in.
    VoicesInTheHead
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @VoicesInTheHead
      win...
      cym104
  • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

    That person who carry iPhone into Flight, Did Person click Setting to turn on Airplane Mode of the iPhone before person into the Flight? My Felt that Person probaly did not turn on Airplane Mode on the iPhone that cause burn it up?
    JMitchell2011
    • god help us .the iPhone burned. Airplane Mode or not it burned .Iwas looki

      @JMitchell2011 god help us .the iPhone burned. Airplane Mode or not it burned .Iwas looking at iPhone but that on hold for now.
      Brandstetter
      • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

        @Brandstetter So, one iPhone 4 out of, what, fifty million? - burns up, and you are ready to throw Apple under the bus.
        Hightech_z
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @JMitchell2011
      Moron....
      gr8hands
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @JMitchell2011 The answer is 'no'. I took my 3Gs on a flight in normal (non-airplane) mode and neither the phone nor the plane were affected in any way whatsoever.
      jrouth
  • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

    why so many negative news about Apple coming back and forth after the decease of Steve Jobs?
    dan zen
    • Because he's not around to cover then up?

      @dan zen
      William Farrell
  • Re: iPhone 4 Burns in flight

    I can't see any reason for a phone of any sort to catch fire just because it was on an air plane. I think that there must be more to the story than we have here. I've flown with a cell phone in my pocket. We were requested to turn our phones OFF during the flight, which I did. I'm not certain it would have worked at 30,000 feet while inside a Faraday Shield if I had attempted to use it.
    draco vulgaris
    • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

      @draco vulgaris

      Being on an airplane would not have caused it to catch fire. It caught fire, and it happened to be on an airplane when it did. Which makes for good news because the last place you want flaming objects is on airplanes.
      SlithyTove
      • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

        @SlithyTove

        I thought an aircraft at height and under pressure had a higher concertration of oxygen in the air, meaning combustion could be more likely?
        jk_welsh
      • Not more oxygen under pressure

        @jk_welsh
        as the higher you go, the less pressure and the less oxygen. The cabin is pressurized to that of sea level, so pressurizing the cabin is actually bringing back up to a "normal level".

        What you're thinking of is something different, which would force everyone to make a 10 minute decompression stop at various alitutudes. :)
        William Farrell
      • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

        @William Farrell<br><br>Airplanes are pressurized to 5000 feet (generally), not sea level, when at 30000 or so feet.
        software_gods
      • Thanks for clearing that up.

        @ software_gods
        still pressures at 5000 ft are less then that of sea level, so even a hair less oxygen, not more.
        William Farrell
      • RE: iPhone 4 burns in flight

        @William Farrell 8000 ft, not sea level. Although I think they are going to start pressurizing to a lower altitude, perhaps the 5000 that another person mentioned, if I remember correctly what a commercial pilot friend of mine recently told me.
        GTGeek88
    • Liquid on a battery?

      @draco vulgaris
      If something spilled on the battery, such as rum, would it catch fire?

      iPhone Flambe?
      voltrarian