Image source: AsiaWire

Another report of an exploding smartwatch, causes third-degree burns

A four year old girl in China has reportedly suffered third-degree burns when the smartwatch on her wrist exploded. According to AsiaWire, she required a skin graft after the unfortunate incident happened.

This occurred a few days ago in Quanzhou, a large city in the south-eastern Chinese province of Fujian. Doctors intervened to speed up the healing process and reduce the risk of infection. For now Yiyi remains in the hospital for further observation following the skin graft procedure on her hand.

The four year old was playing under the supervision of her grandmother when the watch exploded and burst into flames. A loud bang could be heard followed by little Yiyi screaming in pain. The incident took place in her home. The grandmother noticed the burns on Yiyi’s hand so ran it under cold water before rushing her to the hospital.

Essential reading: Best fitness trackers and health gadgets

Yiyi’s father Mr Huang, is in discussion with the smartwatch manufacturer about compensation. The watch the little girl was wearing was not named. So there’s a good chance this is a local brand that is not available on the international markets.

It is hard to deduce the make of the timepiece for the image (shown above). But it definitely looks like a device meant for children.

This is not the first report of a wearable exploding

One could have reservations on whether the story is true, if it were not for other similar incidents. For example, there’s a report of a a child’s watch catching fire in China back in 2018. The device saw a rapid rise in temperature and burned another girl’s wrist when it exploded.

We wrote at the start of this year about a Reddit user in Italy who posted pics of his badly damaged Xiaomi Mi Band 5. Apparently it exploded while sitting on the charger. Here’s the image of what was left.

Reddit user claims his Xiaomi Mi Band 5 exploded, posts pics

Lucky for him it was not on his wrist when this happened. Using cheap-third party chargers can be problematic, but the Italian said he was using the original Mi Band 5 equipment. And it was a new device. He only had it for around a month, so sent it back to Amazon for a full refund.

In 2019, there was a report of a man suffering third-degree burns from a Fitbit. It started smoking in the middle of the night while on his wrist. The pic of the damaged Fitbit was shared more than 4,000 times on Facebook. We don’t know what became of the investigation that followed.

Another report of an exploding smartwatch, causes third-degree burns

But Fitbit did say that if there was a problem, it was an isolated one. Tech equipment goes through extensive tests to ensure safety.

“Fitbit products are designed and produced in accordance with strict standards and undergo extensive internal and external testing to ensure the safety of our users.”

The truth is, under the right conditions, any electrical device can explode. It could be due to excess heat, bad internals or other damage. Luckily reports of such things happening to smartwatches and fitness trackers are extremely rare.

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Ivan Jovin

Ivan has been a tech journalist for over 7 years now, covering all kinds of technology issues. He is the guy who gets to dive deep into the latest wearable tech news.

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