Knock-off iPhone charger leaves man with burn, infection - KMSP-TV

Knock-off iPhone charger leaves man with electrical burn, infection

Posted: Updated:

Cell phones are ubiquitous, but one Twin Cities man is warning that knock-off accessories could leave the budget-conscious in a world of hurt after the off-brand charger he bought online exploded.

Tim Tyrrell told Fox 9 News he was just trying to save some money when he turned to eBay to buy a second charger for his iPhone 5, but that search for savings ended up costing him more than he bargained for.

"It was just a pretty fast, quick jolt," he recalled.

The jolt that left Tyrrell with a serious electrical burn through his hand destroyed his discount charger, tripped the circuit breaker and put Tyrrell in the hospital for more than a week.

"Basically, the charger turned black and, it's where the USB cord connects to the outlet, had a little mini-explosion," Tyrrell explained. "It kind of bruised the fingers inside where I plugged it in."

Tyrrell still has the original charger that came with his phone, but just like the iPhone itself, the accessories aren't cheap.

"I got two wall chargers and a car charger for like, under $10 compared to the $25-30 you pay for an actual charger in the store," Tyrrell said.

The charger that burned out left a quarter-sized wound on Tyrrell's hand that later became infected -- and much more serious. It took three operations to tackle the infection, and Tyrrell's diabetes slowed his recovery while complicating matters.

Accidents like this aren't unique to iPhones either, and it's a problem Apple is well aware of. In fact, the company offered USB chargers at half price in exchange for knock offs last year to get counterfeits off the street. Additionally, those using iOS 7now get a warning message about unreliable accessories that aren't built to Apple's standards.

Tyrrell's father told Fox 9 News it was a tough lesson to learn, but he and his son don't want to see anyone get hurt in pursuit of saving a few bucks.

"Just be careful," Tyrrell urged. "I mean, obviously, I've been in here for a week and probably have to go in for my fourth operation tomorrow."

There have been several documented cases of similar explosions -- even electrocutions linked to counterfeit chargers; however, there are third-party accessories that are Apple-certified. The best advice when looking for off-brand merchandise is to ensure that it is built to the manufacturer's specifications.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Australian Model Posts Untouched Bikini Photo

    Australian Model Posts Untouched Bikini Photo

    Thursday, July 24 2014 3:11 PM EDT2014-07-24 19:11:46 GMT
    25-year-old Robyn Lawley is embracing health and her curves. She posted this untouched and make-up free picture of herself in a bikini on Instagram.
    25-year-old Robyn Lawley is embracing health and her curves. She posted this untouched and make-up free picture of herself in a bikini on Instagram.
  • Minn. crash victim's 4H friends to show animals at Isanti fair

    Minn. crash victim's 4H friends to show animals at Isanti fair

    Thursday, July 24 2014 7:50 PM EDT2014-07-24 23:50:12 GMT
    It is said that the true test of friendship is how many people come to help out a person in need, and if that's true, one 4H participant from Cambridge, Minn., just found out he has an entire fairground full.
    It is said that the true test of friendship is how many people come to help out a person in need, and if that's true, one 4H participant from Cambridge, Minn., just found out he has an entire fairground full.
  • Man shot, killed after confrontation on Metro Transit bus

    Man shot, killed after confrontation on Metro Transit bus

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:51 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:51:01 GMT
    Minneapolis police taped off several streets near 26th and Penn Avenue North on Thursday night after a confrontation on a Metro Transit bus ended in fatal gunfire just one day after city leaders announced a boost of officers.
    Minneapolis police taped off several streets near 26th and Penn Avenue North on Thursday night after a confrontation on a Metro Transit bus ended in fatal gunfire just one day after city leaders announced a boost of officers.
Widgets Magazine
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices