An 11-year-old girl named Kayla Ramos from Bakersfield, California said her iPhone recently caught fire in her sister’s bedroom.
The girl was reportedly using her iPhone 6 in her sister’s bedroom when she said she “saw sparks flying everywhere.” Ramos said she then threw the iPhone on a blanket.
“I was right here on the bed and the phone managed to burn through this blanket and make these holes,” Ramos told KERO-TV in a recent interview. The girl said she used her iPhone 6 to watch YouTube videos. Sometimes, she let her younger siblings use it to play games.
Kayla’s mom, Maria Adata, said she contacted Apple the next day. The Cupertino tech giant then instructed her to take pictures and send the device to them for analysis.
“This could have been my child,” Adata said. “My child could have been caught on fire and she could have even hurt more and I am glad she’s OK.”
In the wake of the incident, Adata said she will no longer sleep next to her own smartphone — speculating that charging the device may have caused it to overheat and catch fire.
Ramos, for her part, said she is dealing pretty well with not having an iPhone anymore.
“It hasn’t been that bad,” she said. “I mean I have been able to hang out with my sisters and my family more.”
Apple told local media that it is currently investigating the cause of the fire.
Battery Safety Tips
For the most part, the lithium-ion batteries within an iPhone are stable. But certain circumstances could cause a lithium-ion battery to fail — a situation that can quickly turn dangerous.
There are some best practices you could use to reduce the risk of battery fires, however.
- Make sure your iPhone doesn’t get too hot. Try not to use it when charging and make sure to monitor its temperature. Don’t charge it in direct sunlight or hot temperatures.
- Get your battery swapped. Older batteries are more prone to failure than new ones. It’s smart to get your battery swapped if it’s showing its age. Go to Settings > Battery to see its overall health. You can set up a battery swap appointment here.
- Use certified accessories. Some cheaper, third-party chargers and power adapters are dangerous. Only use Apple accessories or products with an MFi certification.
- Keep an eye on failure symptoms. If you notice any swelling, leaking, overheating or other uncommon symptoms on your iPhone, stop using it and power it off immediately. Take it in for service at an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Service Technician.