After briefly enjoying widespread acclaim as Samsung’s best smartphone to date before being recalled for fire risks, the Galaxy Note 7 continues to cause headaches for the company after a replacement device was blamed for an onboard fire yesterday at a Kentucky airport.
Shortly after its August release, the Galaxy Note 7 was linked to a spate of fires believed to be caused by the phone’s battery. Samsung ceased sales in the U.S. on September 2 and began an exchange program for customers who had already purchased a phone. On September 20, it initiated a voluntary recall for the device in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Yesterday, however, a replacement version of the Galaxy Note 7 that had been deemed safe by Samsung reportedly caught fire on board a Southwest Airlines airplane sitting at the gate at Louisville International Airport. While the fire didn’t cause any injuries, it is now being investigated by the CPSC and the Federal Aviation Administration.
Smoke Billowing ‘Out of My Pocket’
Samsung did not respond to our request for comment on the incident. However, the Verge reported yesterday that the company provided the following statement: “Until we are able to retrieve the device, we cannot confirm that this incident involves the new Note 7. We are working with the authorities and Southwest now to recover the device and confirm the cause. Once we have examined the device we will have more information to share.”
According to the Verge report, Galaxy Note 7 owner Brian Green had just powered down the phone as the plane was preparing for a flight to Baltimore when the device began smoking.
“I shut down the phone, saw it was going through its power-down cycle, just placed the phone in my pocket and within a few seconds i…