Chinese man allegedly electrocuted by iPhone 4 and third-party adapter

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
For the second time this week, a report from China links Apple's iPhone to an accidental electrocution, with the latest incident involving a 30-year-old man who has been comatose for over ten days.

Adapter


The Beijing Evening News reported Thursday that Wu Jian Tong was "suddenly shocked" while plugging in an iPhone 4 connected to a supposedly "counterfeit" or third-party charger.

According to a translation of the report provided by ZDNet, Wu shouted "I'm getting shocked" as he connected his iPhone 4 to the allegedly counterfeit adapter. Wu's sister, who relayed the story to reporters, said she tried to unplug the device.

"I then felt needle-like pains on my fingertips," she said. "The current was running from my finger, through to my arm and body, and to the foot."

When the emergency medical team arrived on scene, Wu was not breathing and required CPR. Rushed to a nearby hospital, Wu was stabilized by doctors, but he remains in a coma as a result of the severe deprivation of oxygen to his brain.

"It was no doubt an electric shock," Wu's doctor said.

Wu's reported incident pre-dates the death of a Chinese woman allegedly electrocuted in a similar manner. A follow-up to that story from CCTV claims the device in question was actually an iPhone 4, not an iPhone 5 as originally reported, and that a non-Apple adapter was also involved.

In response to the woman's death, which is still under investigation, Apple on Monday promised to "fully investigate and cooperate with authorities in [the] matter." The company has yet to issue a statement regarding Wu's alleged electrocution.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 86
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    I wonder if it was the same brand of adaptor as the woman had? There might be a whole batch that needs recalling.
  • Reply 2 of 86
    b9botb9bot Posts: 238member
    Apple cannot stop the Cheap crap that goes to market that people buy that is not an authorized product of Apple. If you don't want to be shocked or electrocuted buy genuine Apple products that have been fully qualified by the URL listings to comply with safety. If you buy crap you get crap, it's that simple.
    There are a lot of other factors involved here to like what shape are the outlets in the home like? Condition of the wiring in the home and so on. Are they using some kind of transformer as well. If any of these are bad or in poor condition they to can lead to electrocution or shock.
    But an unauthorized wanna be product is the worse offender of all. Not made or approved by Apple. Not quality tested or built to the URL standards for electric safety.
  • Reply 3 of 86
    krawallkrawall Posts: 157member
    It's interesting that this dominantly seem to happen in China.
  • Reply 4 of 86
    This was covered by Watchdog on the BBC in UK some months ago. 9 year old girl was among those electrocuted by knocked-off 'apple' chargers. When examined by an expert they were found to basically be inherently lethal - essentially just connected the live current directly to the USB cable thus putting full mains voltage into the phone! Trading Standards confiscated the entire shipment from all shops selling them but warned that there could be any number of illegal copies just as dangerous. Needless to say, they were all Chinese fakes...
  • Reply 5 of 86
    marokeromarokero Posts: 99member
    How is this Apple's fault when both people who got shocked used third party ac adapters? And when you get such strong shock, how the hell can the guy utter any words to his sister? I got shocked once on 110V for a few seconds, I could not speak or yell, my jaw closed tightly as the current travelled through my body. Same thing happens when someone is tased. This story sounds improbable and an anti-Apple propaganda from China. I don't deny people got hurt by these bad ac adapters, they should definitely be taken out of circulation.
  • Reply 6 of 86
    drblankdrblank Posts: 3,383member
    Well, if you try to save a buck by buying some off brand device, then beware. You can't sue Apple if that happens.
  • Reply 7 of 86


    I live in Sweden an the last few days all the big national newspapers have jumped on the bandwagon and are now reporting people getting burnt or electrocuted by their iPhones. Today there was a frontpage article about a girl that had slept *on* her iPhone 5 and was *chocked* to learn that she mobile finally got very hot and she claimed to have been burnt by it.


     


    I'm sure this is not over yet. I am also equally sure that we are not going to read any stories about competing brands smartphones burning up or electrocuting people even though we *know* that is happening to $50 Android Smartphones as we speak...


     


    It's the pre-AAPL report period after all...

  • Reply 8 of 86
    g-newsg-news Posts: 1,107member
    Very odd. I got lightly shocked by 220V once and certainly didn't feel like talking then. In fact, it's physically impossible. I smell FUD.
  • Reply 9 of 86


    BTW. I forgot:


     


    Countdown to class-action lawsuit in 3...2....1

  • Reply 10 of 86
    robmrobm Posts: 1,068member
    Chinese man allegedly electrocuted by third-party adapter
    TFTFY, AI

    c'mon, it had nothing to do with Apple
    Holy crap, you call this journalism ! What a joke.
    Kasper, dude. Really ?
    jeez
  • Reply 11 of 86
    Are there any reports of electrocutions occurring with any other phones? This cannot be just an Apple-only problem, can it? If no, why are we not reading about those occurrences? If yes, why now and not sooner? The non-Apple adapters have been on sale for years and only in the last ten days (approximately) we read about two electrocutions with the iPhone 4. The iPhones 3GS and 4S and iPads 2 and 3 are all being sold and all can use the same 30-pin adapter. What is making the iPhone 4 so problematic? In closing, there were multiple articles on this and other sites with leading headlines stating how the Thunderbolt adapter technology had been permanently cracked by Chinese companies, should we be preparing to read about electrocutions with the iPhone 5 and iPads Mini and 4? I cannot believe no other phone being sold in China is having this type of horrific problem!

    [B]Updated....[/B]
    I mixed Thunderbolt with Lightning above. Here is the AppleInsider link to the article I had referenced.
    [URL]http://appleinsider.com/articles/12/10/09/apples-lightning-authentication-chip-may-have-been-reverse-engineered[/URL]

    As I read the article and related comments with recent events in mind, I wondered what the manufacturer was thinking now about its actions. And, some of the comments against Apple in support of the manufacturer made me want to copy and paste them here and ask the commenters to stand next to their remarks today.
  • Reply 12 of 86
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,580member
    I was at the flagship Apple store 5th Ave a few weeks ago, and when I was leaving, I saw a vendor right outside the store, on the corner of the block, set up with a cart, selling a whole bunch of cheap accessories for Apple's products. They weren't original Apple made I presume, but I'm not sure if they were illegal knockoffs, as I didn't examine further. I found that to be pretty funny.

    As for these Chinese electrocutions, maybe they have bad infrastructure in China or something, with crappy wiring in some houses and apartments, that wouldn't surprise me. And if you combine that with dangerous knockoff chargers, well, that can maybe be deadly. Anyway, this case is not Apple's fault at all, as we know that a knockoff charger was involved. Sometimes trying to save a buck or two isn't always the smartest thing to do.
  • Reply 13 of 86
    seanie248seanie248 Posts: 174member


    i am definitely suspect of this story. if you are being shocked to the level that puts you in a coma, there is very little chance you have the time to say what is happening to you.


     


    Even with a quick 220v zap, you barely get a chance to say Ow. Trust me.


     


    This sounds like a scene from something like 'Home Alone' ... bzzzzzzz .. "Help!! Iiiiiii'mmmmm beeeeeiiiinnngggg eeelllleeeccctrroooccuuuttteeeddd" bzzzzz


    With hilarious consequences....


     


    or maybe its real and i'm being really insensitive... 


     


    hmmm daddy or chips?

  • Reply 14 of 86
    ecsecs Posts: 307member


    While the original Apple charger has good security measures, and follows all regulations, I dislike the concept of these chargers. With the traditional linear adaptors, I never had any notice of a PSU outputting high voltage, and I've been using electronics since the 80s. This idea of having a tiny item is cool, but the idea of having 340V DC inside it isn't so cool, no matter how many security measures are there. I'd prefer a traditional linear PSU rather than this coolness.

  • Reply 15 of 86

    Quote:


    For the second time this week, a report from China links Apple's iPhone to an accidental electrocution, with the latest incident involving a 30-year-old man who has been comatose for over ten days.



    Oh for the love of Pete—here we go.


     



     


    Quote:


    Originally Posted by RobM View Post



    Chinese man allegedly electrocuted by third-party adapter

    TFTFY, AI



    c'mon, it had nothing to do with Apple

    Holy crap, you call this journalism ! What a joke.

    Kasper, dude. Really ?

    jeez


    Agreed.

  • Reply 16 of 86
    skyzlmtskyzlmt Posts: 46member
    This all sounds so familiar... wait a minute... this is just like the downfall of Steve Martin's Optigrab from the movie, The Jerk
  • Reply 17 of 86

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by seanie248 View Post

    hmmm daddy or chips?


    That quote will pass many by here, but it did make me laugh.

  • Reply 18 of 86
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member
    Dont buy 3rd party chinese knock off crap
  • Reply 19 of 86
    realwarderrealwarder Posts: 136member
    This will work in Apple's favor when they limit accessories to be only those certified by Apple. iOS7 already warns when one is plugged in. That is one step from preventing use of them.
  • Reply 20 of 86
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    realwarder wrote: »
    This will work in Apple's favor when they limit accessories to be only those certified by Apple. iOS7 already warns when one is plugged in. That is one step from preventing use of them.

    You haven't been around long, have you?

    It's hard to imagine how you could block a charger from supplying current, but even if Apple were to do that (completely block third party devices), the media would be all over Apple for having a closed ecosystem and claim that Android is so superior because you can use any charger you wish. Everyone will forget all about the consequences (including bad PR for Apple and injured people) of third party crap floating around and will claim that Apple is evil and greedy.
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