How to donate to Red Cross Hurricane disaster relief

“I had to rip my pants off,” iPhone explodes in pocket and burns man

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

LINDENHURST, N.Y. – A New York man is recovering from second and third degree burns after his iPhone exploded in his pocket.

Erik Johnson said it’s hard just to explain what he’s been through.

Johnson’s iPhone was in his pocket on Valentine’s Day, when it spontaneously exploded he told CNN.

“I bent over to get keys and all I heard was a ‘pop’ and after a little ‘ssshh,’ smoke coming out and just like an instant burn. My leg just starts going on fire, try to get it out, can’t get it out.  I was literally jumping up and down to get the phone out of my pocket but I had dress pants on. I think the phone melted my pockets shut so I couldn’t get into it and I had to rip my pants off. A couple of people actually said they could smell my body burning.”

He spent 10 days in the burn unit before finally getting back home Tuesday with second and third degree burns on his inner thigh.

The metal case of the phone is warped and now stuck to the phone.

Tech expert Ronald Gerber said the tiniest bit of damage to a phone’s circuit board, or the use of third-party charging devices, can cause the battery to overheat and spew lithium lava.

But in this case, Erik says he used an apple cable for his iPhone.

“There have been millions if not billions of phones sold in the last year, the rate of incidents is marginal, it’s infinitesimal,” Gerber said.

Apple said that they are looking into the case as Johnson heals.

“I just want my leg back to what it was you know?” Johnson said.