AT&T Stopping Samsung Phone Exchanges After Reports Replacement Phones Are Catching Fire

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — AT&T will stop giving consumers replacement Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphones because of reports that some of the replacement phones are catching fire, just as the original phones did before they were recalled last month.

“We’re no longer exchanging new Note 7s at this time, pending further investigation of these reported incidents,” AT&T said. AT&T, a major phone retailer, encouraged customers with Note 7 phones to exchange them for other products.

Samsung did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Samsung announced a global recall of the phone in mid-September after incidents in which the batteries overheated or caught fire. It said its replacements were safe, but several people have said those phones caught fire. Last week, a Southwest Airlines flight was evacuated because of a phone that was smoking and making “popping” noises after it was turned off.

On Saturday, a Kentucky man wrote in a Facebook post that his replacement phone caught fire Tuesday night, and he posted photos that he said showed the damaged phone. The man, Michael Klering, said he and his wife inhaled smoke from the burning phone and now have bronchitis.

AT&T says it hasn’t sold Note 7 phones since the initial recall was announced. Verizon, another major seller of smartphones, said it doesn’t have any Note 7 phones but said they are on back order.

Sprint said customers can exchange their replacement Note 7 phones for any other device while the situation is being investigated.

Last month, a 6-year-old Brooklyn boy suffered first-degree burns after his grandmother’s Samsung Galaxy Core burst into flames.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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