Woman Electrocuted While Talking on Plugged-In Mobile Phone

By Giuliana Manca, Epoch Times
April 18, 2016 Updated: May 19, 2016

Stories of death and injury from smartphones and devices have sparked concern over the use of unauthorized and third-party off-brand device chargers.

Suhana Mohamad, a 30-year-old mother of two, was electrocuted while talking on her cellphone as it was charging.

Suhana’s husband, Raja Asri Raja Mat, a counter-terrorism police officer, was asleep when the incident occurred at 11:30 p.m. on April 15.

Local deputy police chief Superintendent Abdul Ghani Mohamad Ji, said Mat immediately rushed his wife to the University of Malaya Medical Center, but she was pronounced dead upon arrival, according to Straits Times.

The man suffered serious burns along the right side of his body, including his face, chest, right hand and ear.  

The 28-year-old was rushed to hospital before later being transferred to another medical facility in the town of Sungai Petani in northwestern Malaysia. 

“The phone was quite hot when I tried to answer the call,” said the fisherman from his hospital bed. “It then exploded, and I was knocked unconscious.”

It is unclear what devices or chargers Suhana and Muhammad Syawal were using. 

Many cheaper, knock-off chargers are not up to the safety standards of Apple and Samsung devices. Even off-brand batteries can explode from overcharging. 

During 2013, Apple sold its own iPhone, iPad, or iPod chargers for the special price of $10 to customers who brought in a third-party chargers to be “disposed of in an environmentally friendly way.”

“We have seen very few incidents related to shock or electrocution (involving cell phones),” Scott Wolfson, communications director for the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, told CNN in a 2013 interview. “Most of our attention has been on overheating, smoke or fire.”

Wolfson recommends smartphone users to stick to the company that made the phone when buying replacement products.