Woman Reportedly Electrocuted by Smartphone in Bathtub, Her Unborn Child Died Too
A pregnant French woman died from apparent electrocution in a bathtub on New Year’s Eve. Doctors were unable to save her unborn child.
The Local reported that the incident occurred to a 21-year-old woman from Martin-d’Hères, a suburb of the French city Grenoble.
The woman was two weeks away from giving birth when her body was found in a bathtub on Dec. 31.
The woman’s husband briefly left the apartment without the keys and was forced to break down the door when his wife did not answer.
The father-to-be discovered his wife floating unconscious in the bathtub. He called emergency services, but first responders were unable to revive the woman or her child.
Police are still investigating the death, but according to Le Dauphiné Libéré, a smartphone was charging right next to the bathtub and is suspected to have been the cause of the electrocution.
The cause of the actual electrocution is still being ascertained.
The woman died of cardiac arrest. Her husband was admitted to a local hospital and treated for shock.
If the smartphone with the charging cable attached is the cause of the death, it wouldn’t be the first such incident.
A 14-year-old girl was electrocuted to death in July in Lovington, New Mexico, reported KCBD. The teen was identified as Madison Coe from Lubbock, Texas.
The girl’s parents posted a photo online to warn others about the dangers of having electrical appliances around water.
— KIX 96.1 (@KIX961) July 11, 2017
It later turned out that the cord the girl used to charge the phone was frayed.
An 18-year-old man died in a similar incident in France in November after he dropped a charging phone into the bathtub.
Back in 2016, a Russian teen girl also died in the bathtub after using an extension cord to plug in her phone.
Electrical Safety First, a British charity, regularly issues warnings about electrical equipment around water.
Steve Curtler, a product safety manager, told the BBC that people can’t get electrocuted from a mobile device, but the risk of serious harm and death increases when the device is connected to a charging cable.
“Although the cable that is plugged into your phone is 5V, somewhere along the line it’s plugged into the electricity supply and you’re reliant on that cable and a transformer to make sure you don’t get into contact with the main voltage,” the expert told the BBC.
“You’re wet, which conducts electricity a lot better; you’re in the bath with no clothes on, so skin resistance is less. You’re vulnerable in the bathroom,” he said.