Man hurt after power bank blows up in pocket

Left: The power bank exploded and burned a hole in the man's pocket. Right: The melted remains of the power bank.
Left: The power bank exploded and burned a hole in the man's pocket. Right: The melted remains of the power bank. PHOTOS: LIANHE WANBAO

A man was taken to hospital on Friday evening after suffering burns from a power bank which had exploded in his pocket.

The middle-aged man burned his palm when he reached into his pocket to remove the device at Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre, reported Chinese-language daily Lianhe Wanbao.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force said it responded to a call at about 6.40pm at Block 209 New Upper Changi Road.

The injured man, who is in his 40s, was taken to Changi General Hospital.

Ms Wendy Hong, 60, told The Sunday Times she was having dinner when she heard a commotion, with several diners standing around the injured man.

"There was thick, grey smoke, and I could also smell a very strong stench of burning chemicals," said the part-timer who works in the clothing industry.

Passers-by helped to put ice on the man's hand, wrapping it up with plastic food wrap.

"His face was screwed up - it was clear he was in a lot of pain," added Ms Hong.

Photographs given to Lianhe Wanbao show the badly burnt and melted remains of the power bank on the hawker centre floor, as well as a large frayed hole in the man's back pocket.

Duck rice stall assistant Huang Jia Qiang, 47, told Lianhe Wanbao that he heard a small explosion, in addition to the smell of something burning. He said the man had been using his phone while eating, with the phone connected to the power bank in his pocket at the same time.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 13, 2019, with the headline 'Man hurt after power bank blows up in pocket'. Print Edition | Subscribe