A teenager in Malaysia died after being electrocuted by his headphones, just the latest in several headphone electrocutions around the world. According to a recent Vice article, Mohd Aidi Azzar Zahrin was listening to headphones from a plugged-in cell phone when he passed away at just sixteen years old. Unfortunately, Zahrin was the fourth person electrocuted by headphones worldwide in 2018. With the possibility that these electrocutions are due to faulty electronic devices, headphone wearers everywhere must be on alert.
Malaysian Teenager’s Death Demonstrates Dangers of Plugged-in Headphones
After apparently listening to the headphones while his phone was charging, Zahrin was discovered by his mother lying on the floor of their home. He was motionless and cold to the touch, with blood pouring from his ear. Burns on his left ear were the only external injuries on his body. An autopsy confirmed the cause of death as electrocution. In a sign the electronic equipment may have been defective, Zahrin’s brother reportedly felt a shock when touching the charging cable.
Headphone Electrocutions Occurring Worldwide
There have been three other headphone electrocutions around the world in 2018. In February 2018, a seventeen-year-old girl was found dead in Brazil after listening to headphones. Luiza Pinheiro was discovered by her grandmother lying on the floor, with the headphones in her ears. A large electric jolt reportedly surged through the charging cell phone, causing the headphones to melt in her ears, and the cell phone had also melted.
In May 2018, a woman in India was reportedly electrocuted while sleeping and listening to music on her headphones. Local police indicated a short circuit may have been the cause of death for the forty-six-year-old woman. Then in June, another person in India, in the village of Pandyo, was killed by an electric shock through his headphones. The electricity in his house was cut off while the twenty-two-year-old man was listening to music from a charging phone, and he received the deadly shock when his power came back on.
And if it appears these accidents are only occurring in developing countries, the matter of the Australian woman electrocuted while listening to headphones shows this is not the case. The twenty-eight-year-old woman was found dead at her home in New South Wales. As with the other electrocutions, she was listening to music from her phone while it was charging. She was electrocuted by a USB charging cable.
The Australian accident was at least partly caused by a defective charging device. Investigations by Australian authorities revealed the charger was not compliant with Australian standards. According to a representative at a New South Wales government regulatory agency, dismantling of the phone showed the charger had failed. Another government official, Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe, warned about the inherent dangers of using non-government-approved electronic devices, stating they posed a serious risk of electrocution or fire. Commissioner Stowe also cautioned against using any electronic devices while they were plugged in and charging.
Contact Parker Waichman LLP for Cases of Electric Shocks from Headphones or Other Electronic Devices
If you or a loved one has received an electric shock from headphones or any other electronic device, call Parker Waichman LLP immediately at 1-800-YOURLAWYER. While the most important precaution is not to listen to headphones from a charging phone or other electronic device, there is no legitimate reason for charging devices to electrocute users. But pursuing a lawsuit against a manufacturer for defective products, especially complex products such as cell phones or electronic devices, requires the expertise of highly sophisticated lawyers. So call Parker Waichman LLP to schedule a consultation, free of charge, with one of our expert product liability attorneys, and we can examine your case and determine how to best assert your legal rights.
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