Commercial

Battery-Powered Headphones Catch Fire on Australian Flight

By Staff Writer | March 15, 2017

A passenger's headphones caught on fire during an airline flight between Melbourne and Beijing. Photo: ATSB.

A passenger's headphones caught on fire during an airline flight between Melbourne and Beijing. Photo: ATSB.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is investigating an incident that occurred on an unnamed airline flight between Melbourne and Beijing where a female passenger’s battery powered headphones caught on fire mid-flight. According to a report on the incident published by ATSB, the passenger fell asleep with the headphones, and was awakened by a loud explosion.

The incident occurred about two hours into the flight, ATSB said. ATSB released the following statement from the passenger:

“As I went to turn around I felt burning on my face. I just grabbed my face which caused
the headphones to go around my neck. I continued to feel burning so I grabbed them off and
threw them on the floor. They were sparking and had small amounts of fire,” she said.

“As I went to stamp my foot on them the flight attendants were already there with a bucket of water to pour on them. They put them into the bucket at the rear of the plane.”

The battery and cover were both melted and stuck to the floor of the aircraft, according to ATSB.

The incident is still under investigation. ATSB has not yet released the make and model of the battery powered headphones.

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