Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Law Blog

Florida Family's Jeep Caught On Fire Due to a Defective Smartphone

Posted by Charles Gilman | Dec 19, 2016 | 0 Comments

The critically acclaimed Samsung Galaxy Note 7 blew up in sales this year, resulting in a whopping 2.5 million purchases worldwide. Its impressive specifications and unique design proved be very attractive in the eyes of consumers. But just weeks after the phone's debut, major issues emerged that threatened the safety of its users; The Note 7 literally blows up. Numerous reports of the phone becoming scorching hot and spontaneously catching fire appeared in every newspaper and news broadcast, forcing Samsung to recall the phones. A Florida family learned the hard way about what happens when you don't replace a defective phone.

Lydia Dornacher and her husband Nathan Dornacher came home on a Monday afternoon after a busy day of browsing yard sales in their neighborhood. Lydia was unpacking the items they bought, transporting them from their new Jeep Grand Cherokee to the house, while Nathan left his Note 7 on the power console in the car to charge up his phone. Lydia sent her 8-year-old daughter and service dog out to the car to run more errands when the dog began to howl and bark loudly. When she and her husband looked outside, they saw their Jeep was engulfed in flames.

Nathan Dornacher took the loss of the car the hardest, expressing that he had put a lot of money into the Jeep, and now he would have to buy a new one along with a new phone. Samsung acknowledged the incident and reminded the family that they could receive a new phone.

“We are aware of the incident and we are working with Mr. Dornacher to investigate his case and ensure we do everything we can for him,” the company said. “Consumer safety is Samsung's highest priority.”

Thirty five cases extremely similar to the Dornacher's have occurred worldwide. Questions surrounding the underlying issues that are causing the smartphones to overheat and burst into flames even have Samsung stumped. After exchanging the phones for supposedly safer versions, it's been reported that the replacements have caught fire too, causing the company to discontinue the phone altogether.

Scientists and phone makers have delved into the issue, and they know that short circuits in the battery caused the explosions. Noting, that the puncture point that the end of a charger touches heats up the liquid electrolyte so quickly that the battery explodes. However, figuring out how to evade this issue exclusively within the Note 7 is a mystery. According to a preliminary report by Korea's Agency for Technology and Standards, Samsung must have created a manufacturing error that caused the plastic layer that separates the positive and negative sides of a battery to become damaged, posing an enormous fire risk for its users.

If you have been harmed as a result of the negligence of a company, you may be entitled to compensation. Attorneys Charles Gilman and Briggs Bedigian are dedicated to getting you the best results possible. Call their office at (800) 529-6162 or contact them online. The firm handles cases in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

About the Author

Charles Gilman

As managing partner and co-founder of Gilman & Bedigian, it is my mission to help our clients recover and get their lives back on track. I strongly believe that every person who is injured by a wrongful act deserves compensation, and I will do my utmost to bring recompense to those who need and deserve it.


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