Alaska Airlines Flight Forced To Evacuate After Passenger’s Samsung Phone Caught Fire

Alaska Airlines Flight Forced To Evacuate After Passenger’s Samsung Phone Caught Fire
Photo: Olivier Douliery, Getty Images

Another day, another story of a Samsung phone turning into a ticking time bomb. On Monday, an Alaska Airlines flight was forced to evacuate all 129 passengers after landing at Seattle–Tacoma International Airport after one of those passenger’s phones caught ablaze.

According to one spokesperson for the airline, crew members aboard Flight 751 from New Orleans noticed something was amiss when a passenger’s phone “overheated and began sparking,” while waiting for a gate at the airport on Monday night. He went on to add that the crew was able to use extinguishers and a fire containment bag to stop the phone from belching out too much smoke, but the “hazy” conditions onboard meant they needed to get out using the plane’s inflatable evacuation slides pretty soon after.

The airport tweeted about the incident saying that passengers only suffered “minor scrapes and bruises” during the incident.

A spokesperson for the Port of Seattle told The Seattle Times that the phone in question — a Samsung Galaxy A21 — had been burned “beyond recognition” by the time crew members recovered the device’s remains. The only reason they were able to figure out the model was via an interview conducted with the phone’s owner after everyone had gotten to safety.

This is hardly the first time Samsung’s had to deal with phones spontaneously sparking at inopportune moments. After rolling out its Note 7 smartphone back in 2016, countless buyers reported their devices catching fire while connected to a charging port. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission formally recalled 1 million of these smartphones just months after their stateside debut, and Samsung quickly pulled the device from the market soon after.

That didn’t stop Samsung from being dogged by reports of exploding phones, though. In 2018, one Long Island woman slapped the company with a class-action suit on allegations that her S9 device exploded in her hand. Since then, stories have come out about newer Samsung devices catching fire in Detroit and California. Apparently, we can add Seattle to that list now, too.

Samsung didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment and we’ll update this post when we hear back.