Skip to main content

Minnesota boy burned when cellphone battery explodes

  • Author:
  • Updated:

A male student at a Rochester middle school suffered burns at school this week after the cellphone he was carrying in his pocket exploded, the Rochester Post-Bulletin reports.

Frank B. Kellogg Middle School principal Dwight Jennings sent out an audio message to parents in the district after the incident Thursday, where, upon the explosion, the cellphone battery burned a hole in the boy's pants and burned his leg.

The battery also left burn mark on the floor, and the explosion left a lingering odor that could be smelled throughout the school. The principal advised parents to monitor their child for any effects from inhaling the smoke.

Children who were in the classroom where the cellphone exploded were evacuated from the area, and were allowed to return when the smoke cleared.

KARE 11 talked with a spokesman with the Consumer Products Safety Commission, who confirmed they've received reports before of cellphones exploding and sometimes catching on fire.

The explosions are caused by something called "thermal runaway," where a domino effect is created when a cellphone battery gets hot.

Experts with Clockwork Media Systems told KARE that a chemical reaction starts in the battery and it gets "hotter and hotter until gases escape or it explodes."

Although the cellphone explosions are rare, the CPSC suggests the following safety measures: Don't use chargers or batteries not designed to work with your cellphone and avoid knock-off brands; keep your cellphones away from excessive heat; and keep your cellphone battery's positive and negative connections from crossing.

A full list of safety measures can be found on the CPSC website.

See KARE's report below.

Next Up

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves survive Knicks' second-half barrage to get back to .500

Karl-Anthony Towns' lay-in helped Minnesota get a win in The Garden.

FLickr - crime scene tape do not crozz

Charges: MN teen shot mom after dispute over meth

The girl's mother said there had been a dispute over methamphetamine.

bad roads, blizzard

No travel advised: High winds, whiteout conditions in NW MN

Zero visibility in parts of greater Minnesota Tuesday night.

holy angels high school j nelson

Update: Holy Angels evacuated over bomb threat, school says

Someone left a voicemail early Tuesday suggesting there was an explosive device.

radio station, microphone

Convicted stalker charged with harassment of another DJ at The Current

He pleaded guilty to similar charges involving the DJ's colleague back in 2015.

Mall of America exterior Tyler Vigen Wikimedia COmmons

10 new shops, food stops at Mall of America

Donuts, K-fashion, model cars — the new tenants cover a lot of bases.

Gophers basketball

Gophers fall below roster minimum, postpone Penn State game

It is "due to internal COVID-19 protocols within the Golden Gopher program."

Raheem Morris

Report: Vikings request interview with Rams' Raheem Morris

Morris was once the youngest head coach in the NFL at 33 years old.

train crossing S Boardman Ave, New York Mills, Minnesota - August 2013 crop GSV

Sheriff: Drunk driver crashed trying to 'beat the train'

The BNSF train slammed into the side of the driver's car.


Man run over after parking dispute leads to road rage crash

The two groups fought about parking prior to the crash.

hwy 41 engler boulevard crash crop

Deadly crash shuts down small stretch of Chaska highway for hours

A driver crossed over the center median and hit another vehicle.

covid test 6

You can now order 4 free at-home COVID tests from the government

Tests will ship for free within 7-12 days, according to the White House.