Apple Investigating Alleged iPhone 5 Electrocution Death

Apple Investigating Alleged iPhone 5 Electrocution Death
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Last Thursday, 23-year-old flight attendant Ma Ailun apparently died after being electrocuted by her iPhone 5. According to the Xinhua news agency, Ma was allegedly electrocuted when she answered her iPhone 5, which was plugged in and charging. The incident reportedly happened at Ma’s home.

Since then, warnings about using iPhones while charging have been appearing en masse on China’s Weibo microblogging service.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of this tragic incident and offer our condolences to the Ma family. We will fully investigate and cooperate with authorities in this matter,” Apple said in an email (via Reuters).

Ma’s brother told news site Apple Daily that the family believed she was electrocuted while answering the phone. Her iPhone has since been handed over to Xinjiang police, South China Morning Post reports.

Johnny Sin Kin-on, a professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, told SCMP: “There is a risk using an electrical device while its installed battery is being charged, be it a shaver or a phone.” Dr Peter Chiu Ping-kuen, head of the department of electronic and information engineering at the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (Sha Tin) agreed, but added that since the circumstances are unknown, one should not jump to conclusions.

Apple to investigate reported iPhone 5 shock death [SCMP]
Apple to probe death of Chinese woman who died charging iPhone [Reuters]


  • Sounds like some bizarre unlikely-in-the-real-world death from a Final Destination flick

    • AFAIK a dodgy cable could not cause this unless they managed to hold the phone in such a way while answering it that the cable is touching their chin (And since the iPhone 5 is taller than the last model it’s even LESS likely than before to happen!). I would say if anything it was dodgy after market battery combined with a botched installation.

  • Oh.. so this is why my wife was talking about iPhone 5 charging stuff the other day.. She didn’t specifically mention this incident but the amount of Chinese websites with iPhone 5 charging stories must have increased..

  • I do recall warning labels that used to/do come with phones specifically advising not to answer the phone while charging. This is why.

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