A Michigan woman saw her Nissan Maxima burn after one of her two Samsung-made Android smartphones exploded late last month, ABC reports. While driving in downtown Detroit on May 21 with her two handsets — the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S8 — sitting in the vehicle’s cupholder, the victim says she caught a spark in her peripheral vision, having witnessed the thereof immediately turned into fire. She pulled over and got out of the vehicle but reportedly isn’t certain which one of the two devices caused the incident. “I thought I was going to die,” the woman told WXYZ, having speculated how much worse the situation could have been if she was driving down a highway and wasn’t able to safely get out of the vehicle.
After Samsung was notified about the incident, the company provided the woman with a recovery kit last used for the Galaxy Note 7-series devices which hit the stateside market in the summer of 2016 and were recalled shortly after a significant portion of all units demonstrated a tendency to spontaneously combust. The Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus were never alleged to represent a fire hazard and neither was the Galaxy S4 lineup. The Detroit Fire Department is still investigating the incident but has already ruled out arson, second deputy commissioner Chuck Simms said.
The victim’s attorney Gerald Thurswell refused to send the faulty devices back to Samsung and invited the company to examine them at his law offices, which the company agreed to, having investigated them for some two hours before promising it’ll get back to him with any findings. No lawsuits have yet been filed and the woman is understood to have been insured. The American branch of the South Korean tech giant urged the media and the general public to not jump to any conclusions as it stands behind the quality of all of its products sold in the United States. Select Galaxy Note 4 units from AT&T were recalled last year due to possible fire hazards, though the devices in question were all refurbished, with the fault for the ordeal lying on counterfeit replacement batteries accidentally used by FedEx — who initiated the recall — or one of its partners.