A woman from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, reportedly incurred second-degree burns after her Fitbit Flex 2 suddenly exploded on her wrist. The victim, identified as Dina Mitchell, revealed that the health tracker device was “totally melted” after the incident.
On Tuesday night, Mitchell was allegedly reading a book when her Fitbit Flex 2 suddenly caught fire for no clear reason. Apparently, the wrist device was a birthday present she got just two weeks ago.
Following the incident, Mitchell reportedly went straight to Aurora Health Care’s urgent care facility to seek medical assistance. According to reports, the doctor had to literally pick burned pieces of plastic out of the victim’s skin.
“The Fitbit itself is totally melted. The bracelet melted, and I got pieces of plastic burned into my arm.”
Mitchell also told ABC News her Fitbit Flex 2 was functioning properly prior to the explosion and that she has no idea why it suddenly went off like that.
“I was literally just sitting and reading when my Fitbit exploded. It was either defective or really mad I was sitting still so long… I don’t know. Either way, It burned the heck out of my arm.”
She also added that she ripped the device off of her arm as it was still burning and tossed it onto the floor.
Mitchell, who is now wary of the famous health device, warns other Fitbit users to be extra cautious in handling and using the device. She also expressed her concern to younger people using the device.
“This is a product so many people use,” Mitchell said. “My nephew, their whole class gets these from their teachers and they wear them. If they are exploding or if there’s some type of malfunction with them… I mean, I’m going to have a scar from this probably, can you imagine what it would do to a child?”
Fitbit reportedly offered Mitchell a replacement, but the injured victim is now hesitant to use the device again.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson from Fitbit also confirmed that the company is currently investigating the issue. The company also assured other users that there’s no reason to stop using the device.
“We are extremely concerned about Ms. Mitchell’s report regarding her Flex 2 and take it very seriously, as the health and safety of our customers are our top priority,” the company said in a statement. We are not aware of any other complaints of this nature and see no reason for people to stop wearing their Flex 2.”
The most iconic #tracker, now more customisable than ever… Fitbit Flex 2, with the slimmest wristband, is made for wherever life takes you! The removable tracker weighs just 23,5 g! You don't miss any call or text notification, it reminds you to move (250 steps every hour) and it has a 5-day battery life. Make fitness fun day and night! #FitbitFlex2 #makefitnessfun #outdoorsactivities #fitness #fitnessaccessories #fitnessstyle #_nexion_
Fitbit has had issues with its hardware in the past, but nothing similar to the recent incident. Last year, some users were complaining about the accuracy of its heart rate-tracking technology, claiming it was faulty. Just this month, there were also reports that the company’s production issues caused the delay of its next smartwatch.
The company’s performance in the market also faced a drastic drop last year. According to reports, Fitbit loses 75 percent of its value in 2016. The device’s revenue reportedly fell 19 percent in last year’s fourth quarter and is expected to slide again from 21 to 31 percent this year. With Mitchell’s incident, it is expected to have a negative impact on Fitbit’s current state.
This year, Fitbit is also reportedly planning to expand into smartwatches. According to reports, the company already acquired potentially useful technology like Coin, Pebble, and Vector. Fitbit CEO James Park shared his optimism about this.
“We plan on expanding into smartwatches. If you look at any industry data in the market in terms of sell-through, we think entering this market will double our addressable market. Our acquisition of Coin, Pebble and Vector have accelerated our efforts.”
[Featured Image by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images]