Lithium ion batteries can be extremely dangerous if they’re not stored or handled correctly. (Case in point: Samsung and its Galaxy Note7 debacle.) However, it’s not just smartphones that are at risk of fires and explosions.
In a U.K. shopping center, a CCTV captured what can happen when you’re careless with how you store your e-cigarette (and its batteries). After a spare battery made contact with either metal in its owner’s pocket, or another battery, it shorted, causing a small explosion.
The man suffered only minor injuries from the incident, but it’s a good reminder of best practices when it comes to handling batteries. Fire authorities recommend keeping batteries in a plastic case to prevent this kind of explosion from happening.
“This is not the first time we have seen injuries caused by a lithium-ion battery exploding whilst being carried in someone’s pocket,” fire investigator Jamie Lister said of the incident. “There does not need to be a fault with the battery, the problem is the incorrect storage of the batteries.”