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Fidget spinners have been everywhere recently: first as a novelty gadget with claims about helping kids focus, and then as a popular toy taking over classrooms and annoying teachers across the country. But now some may pose a fire hazard.
Two mothers in Michigan and Alabama reported that their children’s Bluetooth-enabled fidget spinners burst into flames in the past few weeks. Both times, the spinners were plugged into outlets, and when they caught on fire the toys melted and burned the surfaces they were sitting on.
“We were about five or ten minutes from leaving the house for the day before this happened,” Kimberly Allums of Gardendale, Al. told WBRC. “[My son] noticed that it burst into flames and he just started screaming. I was downstairs and all I heard was ‘fire, fire’ and the fidget spinner had literally — it wasn’t smoking, it was in flames.”
Allums said the spinner was charging for less than 45 minutes before it caught on fire, according to WBRC. Some have raised concerns about the toys as choking hazards, and teachers have complained they distract students. But this is the latest development in the fidget spinner saga.
“They’re just simple, little things you spin and I love to play with them,” Michelle Carr, the Michigan mother whose fidget spinner caught fire, told WEYI. “I know there are tons of kids who want to go get them, but if you plug them in, just stay by and make sure it’s charged and it doesn’t catch.”
Carr said her spinner was charging for less than 30 minutes before exploding. Recent weeks have already seen reports of fidget spinners dropping in popularity from their initial high, and these reports are unlikely to help reverse the tailspin.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission told Gizmodo that it is investigating these incidents, and it recommended consumers stay with products while charging and avoid letting products charge overnight.