Health Canada investigating after power bank explodes in Metchosin
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Wednesday, June 27, 2018 6:41PM PDT
A Metchosin couple says they're considering themselves lucky after a power bank they purchased to charge cell phones exploded, scorching a floor in their home.
Marina Winkler says she bought several Pocket Juice power banks from Costco for herself and friends.
She said she had used it since she bought it around Christmas and never had an issue – until earlier this week.
"I hear this pop sound, I run in here and all you smell is electrical," said Winkler.
She looked down at where the power bank was plugged into the wall and saw fire.
"There was smoke and a little flame," she said. " I unplugged it and stepped on the flame and basically just left that on the ground because I didn't want to touch it."
The small fire left a scorch mark on Winkler's floor – and left her with plenty of questions.
She can't say what caused the device to explode, but she's warning others to be careful with pocket-sized power packs and so is her husband Brent, a firefighter.
"We trust these devices, we plug them in and we use them daily and you hope there's gonna be no issues but in this case, it can happen," he said.
Health Canada hasn't issued any recall notices around the product and has not received any other incident reports. Still, the agency says it's looking into the Winkler's case to see if any further action may be necessary.
The manufacturer of the product, Tzumi Electronics, issued a statement apologizing for the couple's experience.
"At Tzumi Electronics, we take the quality of our products and the consumer's safety very seriously," the company said. "We've sold tens of millions of power banks over the years, and our battery cells are put through rigorous safety testing by accredited laboratories during production cycles. We're truly sorry for this experience and would love the opportunity to research and understand what happened in this case."
The couple says while the fire damaged the floor, it could have been much worse if it went unattended.
"Had I not been quick on my toes or whatever, this could've been our home," Winkler said.