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Users of MP3 players suffer injuries in storms

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 12 Jul 2007 4:04 User comments (12)

Users of MP3 players suffer injuries in storms While it is (or really should be) common sense not to use a mobile phone or MP3 player - or any other electrical gadget - outside during a storm or in rain, there has been a rise in reported injuries as a result of such use. However, sometimes the danger is not clear. Last summer, Jason Bunch, 18, Colorado, was outside mowing the lawn and listening to his iPod while a storm was off in the distance.
Even though it wasn't raining and the storm was far off, lightning struck a nearby tree and thanks to his iPod and headphones, he suffered hearing damage in both ears, burns from the earphone wires on the sides of his face, a nasty burn on his hip where the iPod had been in a pocket and burns up along his side of his body where the earphones cord had been "outside" his t-shirt.

"It's going to hit where it's going to hit, but once it contacts metal, the metal conducts the electricity," said Dr. Mary Ann Cooper of the American College of Emergency Physicians and an ER doctor at University of Illinois Medical Center at Chicago. Another, more serious case occurred when a man was jogging and listening to his iPod.

The 39 year old dentist from the Vancouver area ended up in a thunderstorm. Witnesses saw lightning hit a tree a couple of feet away which jumped to his body. He suffered second degree burns where the iPod had been strapped to his chest and up the sides of his neck. It ruptured both ear drums, dislocated tiny ear bones that transmit sound waves, and broke the man's jaw in four places.

There has also been many reported cases of similar happenings when lightning strikes near a user on a mobile phone. Apple's iPod packaging actually warns about its use during stormy weather and rain. So remember, "When thunder roars, go indoors!"

Source:
Yahoo (AP)

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12 user comments

112.7.2007 5:01

Quote:
Witnesses saw lightning hit a tree a couple of feet away which jumped to his body. He suffered second degree burns where the iPod had been strapped to his chest and up the sides of his neck. It ruptured both ear drums, dislocated tiny ear bones that transmit sound waves, and broke the man's jaw in four places.
A lightning strike can cause these injuries even without the use of an electrical device.

212.7.2007 5:37

Of course, any hit from lightning can be fatal, in fact, most of the time the person goes into cardiac arrest. but the point here is that he got badly burned and suffered serious ear damage because he had an electrical device strapped to him at the time and an electrical connecting it to his ears.

312.7.2007 7:05

wow...that's weird. Now I know to not wear my iPod outside if there is any chance of a storm.

412.7.2007 9:25

Will wearing a tin-foil hat reduce the chance of lightning damage as
I'm deeply concerned?I've now thrown away all my nylon clothes incase
they melt on my body and personaly banned the use of plastic shoes that to prevent static charge build up that could create additional damage.
Im also thinking of getting a steel pram for my dog with a rubber
grounding flappy bit...there again my dog has bowel trouble so maybe
I'll let it fry and buy a camel instead.

512.7.2007 11:59

Originally posted by ChromeMud:
Will wearing a tin-foil hat reduce the chance of lightning damage as
I'm deeply concerned?I've now thrown away all my nylon clothes incase
they melt on my body and personaly banned the use of plastic shoes that to prevent static charge build up that could create additional damage.
Im also thinking of getting a steel pram for my dog with a rubber
grounding flappy bit...there again my dog has bowel trouble so maybe
I'll let it fry and buy a camel instead.
XD

613.7.2007 10:15

Wow......what next? "Man hit by lightning while leaning against metal automobile"......"Man hit by lightning while sitting under tall tree"......"Man hit by lightning while putting up TV antenna".......well duhhh. Lightning goes where it wants to. How about people learning to not be outside when there are storms present?

715.7.2007 18:31

Originally posted by Fiji5555:
Wow......what next? "Man hit by lightning while leaning against metal automobile"......"Man hit by lightning while sitting under tall tree"......"Man hit by lightning while putting up TV antenna".......well duhhh. Lightning goes where it wants to. How about people learning to not be outside when there are storms present?
"Man hit by lightning attracted to building he was in" :p

817.7.2007 2:34

What a tragic accident for this young man to have to go through. But i feel that this is just a freakish accident and nothing else,

920.7.2007 20:13

they just think that apple is going to give em shares in their company or free ipods? people dont change!!

1020.7.2007 20:30

Life is hard. It's even harder when your stupid.

1121.7.2007 10:48

Could it be that the iPod saved this man's life? Instead of traveling through his body and causing cardiac arrest, the electrical discharge took the path of least resistence--through the metal conductors in the iPod and headphones wires.
Of course, we'll never know. The best advice is to beware of storms.

1218.8.2007 12:12

Originally posted by Master63:
Could it be that the iPod saved this man's life?
No, youu have it all wrong. It is apple's fault that this man was hurt to begin with. if they had never invented the iPod, he never would have been outside.

Odly enough, I could see this logic standing up in the court system.

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