If you use power banks to charge your phone or other gear on the go pay attention. If the price sounds too good to be true: it probably is. A cheap power bank may explode and cause a serious disaster – and this is just what happened to a man in China recently. While riding on a bus, his power bank exploded in his backpack and set it on fire.
In the video, you can see the man chatting with his friend on a bus when his backpack suddenly explodes and catches fire. The driver opened the door and the man quickly got out, throwing away his power bank that was still smoking and burning. No one was hurt, but this was pure luck considering the circumstances.
To make things worse, exploding power banks are nothing new in China, according to South China Morning Post. “They have caught fire on buses, in subway stations and on planes,” SCMP writes. One time the explosion even forced a commercial flight to make an emergency landing.
CCTV inspected power banks made in China and reported that nearly 40% of them didn’t meet the required standards. They either didn’t have as much capacity as claimed or weren’t certified by the state. One of the tested power banks even had a battery cell that didn’t generate any voltage. When CCTV cracked it open, they realized that it was filled with sand. According to CCTV, this is all a part of money-saving tactics. And apparently, money is more important to some manufacturers than people’s lives and health.
Anyways, take this as a warning and a reminder: if you buy power banks, make sure that they were made by reputable brands. It’s better to pay a little extra to be safe than risk your life (or at least your eyebrows) to save a few bucks.