The battery inside an Apple iPad exploded in an Apple Store this weekend, which led to an evacuation, the fire service present, and more people to complain about respiratory problems. The event took place at the Apple Store in Leidseplein Square in Amsterdam, one of three official Apple stores in the Netherlands.
It is assumed that a "leaking" battery pack overheated and caused the explosion, according to a member of the Fire Department . However, there was apparently no smoke or fire involved; but three Apple Store employees complained about breathing problems. An ambulance participated to help them. Local News Output AS Media said the evacuation caused "panic" and shows a picture of the location with the public waiting outside the store.
What was left on the iPad and the battery was safely placed in a container filled with sand, and the fire department considered that the area would be safe for the business when it had been fully ventilated. The Apple Store opened again late on Sunday afternoon. It's not clear if the iPad was a model on the screen for use by the audience, or if it was a model for repair. The immediate presence of a sandy container and only employees affected by smoke suggests that it may have been in the workshop, rather than out in the store itself.
This is at least the third example of battery rules or small explosions occurring in Apple Stores around the world this year. An iPhone battery exploded in the Apple Store in Zurich, Switzerland in January, as well as employees demanding medical treatment. Soon afterwards another battery exploded in Valencia, Spain's Apple Store. On that occasion, the incident was handled by the staff and no emergency services attended. There have also been reports that iPhone batteries explode after being damaged or replaced by unauthorized Apple service centers, possibly using third party replacement parts.
Despite these reports, lithium ion batteries are used without problems by millions of people around the world; but the risk increases when not used properly. The London Fire Department recommends that you always use the included charger and cable, or buy genuine replacements, and not leave the phones uncharged for long periods of time.