Getting a good night’s sleep can be hard enough with all of the distractions constantly surrounding us everyday, the most prominent of which are cellular devices. If you’re like most people, using your phone before going to bed has become a habitual part of your nightly routine. According to Business Insider, 95 percent of people are on their phones moments before going to bed.
The habit of bringing our phones so close to our sleeping spaces has led to a staggering number of individuals actually going to sleep with their phones either under their pillow or next to them in bed. A whopping 90 percent of individuals between the ages of 18-29 sleep with their smartphones, as cited by Business Insider.
One Texas teen received a rather terrifying wake up call to the dangers of sleeping with smartphones when she awoke to a smoldering pillow.
According to WTVR, Ariel Tolfree had gone to bed with a Samsung Galaxy S4 tucked underneath her pillow. Shortly into the night, Tolfree picked up on a burning smell emanating from somewhere, but decided to go back to sleep as she wasn’t too alarmed.
Come morning time, Tolfree awoke to the irrefutable signs of a fire, having noticed that her smartphone had burned through her pillow.
A spokesperson for Samsung pointed out that Tolfree was using a replacement battery in her phone at the time, something the company advises against as products made by third-party manufacturers can be incompatible with the phones.
The event occurred in July 2014, however the message is still just as relevant today. The NYPD 33rd Precinct recently shared the photos of Tolfree’s alarming incident on Twitter, admonishing the public on the dangers of sleeping with phones underneath pillows.
While the replacement battery in Tolfree’s phone is suspected to have been responsible for the fire, the Samsung manual warns against restricting air flow to the phone and smothering it within enclosed spaces, as such environments can lead to performance issues and risk of fire.
One should always air on the side of caution when it comes to taking a phone into bed. Stow the device somewhere away from your immediate sleeping area, and be sure not to fall asleep with it tucked underneath bedding or pillows.