An iPod music player was the cause of a toxic fumes scare at Farmington High School in New Hampshire June 21 when the battery of the device exploded and caught fire.
Farmington Fire Chief Richard Fowler said a 16-year-old boy said he was playing with the iPod in class and bending it back and forth, which broke the battery. It started to spark and smoke in his hand, so the student dropped the iPod on the floor—where it caused a minor explosion and fire.
The student put water on the fire in an effort to put it out, Fowler said, but that actually made it worse.
Two students in the classroom were transported to a local hospital by Farmington and New Durham ambulances for precautionary reasons.
Fowler said the small fire, which extinguished itself, created smoke with an acid smell, causing headaches and nausea to the 10 to 15 students in the science classroom. The smoke also went into a hallway of the school, expanding the acid smoke effect.
All students feeling effects from the smoke were taken to the school cafeteria and examined by EMS personnel. The school was briefly locked down, and the ventilation system was turned on to clear smoke from the classroom and hallways so students could finish their final exams.