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First-gen iPod nano bursts into flames at airport

Author's pic

By Charles Starrett

Contributing Editor
Published: Friday, October 5, 2007
News Categories: iPod nano


Danny Williams of Douglasville, GA had his first-generation iPod nano ignite in his pocket while he was working at a kiosk in the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. “So I look down and I see flames coming up to my chest,” said Williams. “I’m still kind of freaked out that after only a year and a half my iPod caught fire in my pocket.” According to reports, Williams’ iPod was in flames for roughly fifteen seconds; he believes that a piece of paper in his pocket with the iPod may have shielded him from the flames, preventing burn injuries. The iPod owner also said that Apple has requested that he send the unit back, and has promised a replacement.

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I wonder if they are going to upgrade him to the new iFat Nano instead of sending him a refurbished 1st Gen one.

Posted by Jeddak in Louisville, KY on October 5, 2007 at 9:19 AM (PDT)


I have the same NANO and had no issues os far BUT now i’m thinking if it posses a danger if i leave my NANO just like that in the house. It might starts a fire.

I’m about to get me the IPhone and wonder if this issue exist with the IPhone too ......

Posted by dennis on October 5, 2007 at 9:19 AM (PDT)


LOL @ “15 seconds of flame”!


Posted by Peterphan on October 5, 2007 at 9:21 AM (PDT)


Dang, baked Apple.

Posted by Jason on October 5, 2007 at 10:28 AM (PDT)


I like baked apple! XD

Posted by Wii-man on October 5, 2007 at 10:29 AM (PDT)


The little China girl who slaved to make that iPod should be punished.

Posted by JustJoking on October 5, 2007 at 10:33 AM (PDT)


“I have the same NANO and had no issues os far BUT now i’m thinking if it posses a danger if i leave my NANO just like that in the house. It might starts a fire.

I’m about to get me the IPhone and wonder if this issue exist with the IPhone too ......”

This is why I live in a barren concrete bunker. You can never be too safe.

Posted by ort on October 5, 2007 at 10:54 AM (PDT)


Don’t know where the first group of comments went, but is anyone else troubled by the photo that shows the cable attached? I suspect that the story isn’t the whole truth.

Posted by Aceon6 in New England, USA on October 5, 2007 at 10:54 AM (PDT)


That’s crazy stuff.

Posted by on October 5, 2007 at 11:02 AM (PDT)


Why would someone attach a cable to a burned up Nano as shown in the news video? Looks fishy to me…

Posted by RNB in Bakersfield, CA on October 5, 2007 at 11:11 AM (PDT)


@Aceon6 and RNB,

The photo that appeared in this story earlier, showing a white first-generation iPod nano with a cord attached, was taken from the WSB-TV site. The station found the photo online in a separate report of a first-generation iPod nano that caught fire. After our story was posted, the station updated their report with the image you now see above, which is a picture of Mr. Williams’ iPod.

Posted by Charles Starrett on October 5, 2007 at 11:34 AM (PDT)


Perhaps it’s karma. If Mr Williams had been working instead of listening to his iPod it wouldn’t have happened. Anybody that’s been through ATL knows that most of the employees there need to have a flame lit…
I’m thinking maybe he got his cigarette lighter a little too close to his iPod while he was on his 10th break of his 4 hour shift.

Posted by rg_spb on October 5, 2007 at 12:24 PM (PDT)


Thats not particularly funny as some people seem to think - is this nano a risk or not?  What exactly was he doing with the nano - one presumes it was in use?

Posted by dimmer on October 5, 2007 at 1:02 PM (PDT)


Kudos to Apple for thinking quick and asking him to send it back for free replacement so that the evidence will be gone before the lawsuit comes!  Imagine the monetary award form a class action suit if it is somehow proven that a battery failure or similar problem caused a potentially life threatening fire…Wow!

Posted by skidemn on October 5, 2007 at 1:34 PM (PDT)


Out of 100 million iPods sold, one or two burst into flames unexpectedly without apparent provocation. Does anybody here know the failure rate for modern batteries in general? I don’t think this represents an unusual failure rate.

This story will get more play than similar ones because it involves the key word “iPod.” If this had been a generic cell phone or a disposable lighter, it would never even make the evening news. (Of course, if it were an iPhone, it would be the lead story.)

Items with stored chemical energy (disposable lighters, anything with a battery, etc.) have a certain inherent danger. You can minimize it, but you can’t escape it.

@Dennis & Dimmer: The chance of this happening to you is less than your odds of winning the lottery.

It pains me that people worry about insignificant things like this (exploding iPod Nanos) while smoking cigarettes, driving after a few drinks, or overeating. Some risk factors are larger than others; don’t sweat the insignificant stuff.

Posted by BJ Nemeth on October 5, 2007 at 4:05 PM (PDT)


so a piece of paper protected him from the flames, eh? It must be one of those fire retartant paper.
In addition, the flames shot up to his chest? Wouldn’t the flames leave burn marks all the way to his chest. Sounds like a money grab to me.

Posted by fireblade on October 5, 2007 at 9:10 PM (PDT)


Oh yeah…mine caught fire too…Hey Larry quick…put that damn torch away…Shhh… it is right here ...see how it ‘s melted and everything. OK Apple…where’s my new one…LOL

Posted by Paris on October 5, 2007 at 10:30 PM (PDT)


Since when did Sony start making iPods?

Posted by DSM on October 6, 2007 at 6:09 PM (PDT)


Don’t know how many of you guys caught this, sorry if it’s already been posted but ....

He says that he was protected by the flames by a PIECE OF PAPER!!! Come on get serious!  A piece of paper…. fire….
Nuff said.

Posted by 3rdEye on October 7, 2007 at 7:51 AM (PDT)


A extra built in feature. You can also use it as a lighter. Wow.

Posted by Robert on October 8, 2007 at 9:07 AM (PDT)

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