Official: Plane evacuated after smoke from Samsung device


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — An overheated Samsung device created smoke that caused a plane to be evacuated at Louisville International Airport on Wednesday, an official said.

The smoke prompted Southwest Airlines to evacuate the plane before it departed for Baltimore, Louisville Metro Arson Capt. Kevin Fletcher told news outlets.

A total of 75 passengers and crew were evacuated from the flight, and no one was injured, said airport authority spokeswoman Natalie Chaudoin.

Fletcher said there was minor damage to the plane's carpet where the device was dropped.

U.S. safety regulators announced a formal recall last month of Samsung's Galaxy Note7 smartphone after a spate of fires led to injuries and property damage.

Sarah Green, of New Albany, Indiana, was quoted by The Courier-Journal as saying that her husband, Brian, told her his Galaxy Note7 made a popping noise and started smoking after he powered it down. Green said the phone had been replaced about two weeks ago due to the recall.

She said he called her from another person's phone to tell her what happened.

Fire department Capt. Sal Melendez said the device overheated during the flight crew's safety demonstration.

Last month, the Federal Aviation Administration took the unusual step of warning passengers not to use or charge the Galaxy Note 7 phones while on board, and not to place them in checked bags.

Southwest warns on its website that passengers with the Samsung device must carry them on the plane instead of checking them in luggage. They should keep the phone turned off and disconnected from power sources, and passengers should make sure that the power switch can't accidentally be moved to the "on" position.

The advisory does not apply to phones that have a green battery icon, which, according to Samsung, indicates that the phone is a post-recall model.

Samsung said in a statement that the company can't confirm that the new Note7 was involved in the incident and is working with authorities to recover the device and confirm the cause.


Associated Press writer David Koenig contributed to this report.