A Southwest flight was evacuated in Lousiville, Kentucky when a Samsung Galaxy Note 7 overheated and began smoking on board. Louisville Metro Arson investigators confirmed to WAVE News 3 that a Samsung device was the cause of the incident. All passengers and crew members exited the plane safely via the main cabin door and no injuries were reported. To make matters worse, the device was a replacement following the company's global recall of the handset over the last few weeks.
The Verge spoke to Brian Green, the owner of the Note 7, who confirmed that the phone was a replacement unit that he received at an AT&T store on September 21st. There's a black square icon on the back of the box and Green said the device had a green battery indicator, both of which are signs Samsung said would let customers know a handset was safe to use. Green told The Verge he had powered down the device at the request of the crew and put it in his pocket when it began smoking. One of Green's colleagues said the phone had burned through the plane's carpet when they went back on board to grab carry-on items.
The recent global recall of the Note 7 was bad enough for Samsung, but if there are still safety risks with the replacement devices, the whole ordeal could get a lot worse. The company has released battery-limiting updates outside of the US to prevent the phones from exploding.
Update: A Samsung spokesperson sent the following statement to Engadget:
"Until we are able to retrieve the device, we cannot confirm that this incident involves the new Note 7. We are working with the authorities and Southwest now to recover the device and confirm the cause. Once we have examined the device we will have more information to share."