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Dell laptop smoked in Singapore

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It's happened again. Another Dell notebook, a Latitude D410, has burst into flames, this time in Singapore. According to the machine's owner a series of popping noises culminated in a surfeit of white smoke and "flames coming up the side of the laptop".

The incident actually took place in November 2005, the Sydney Morning Herald reports today, but its disclosure was prompted by last week's case of a spontaneously combusting Dell notebook in the US, and a similar event which took place in Japan last month.

Here are some shots - the Sydney Morning Herald has plenty more.

dell laptop fire damage - pic courtesy of the sydney morning herald

dell laptop fire damage - pic courtesy of the sydney morning herald

The Singapore incident occurred before Dell issued a recall of batteries which, it said, could overheat and potentially catch fire. The Latitude D410 was one of the machines covered by the December 2005 recall.

Interesting, the Dell that went up in smoke last week has been identified by various Reg Hardware readers as a Latitude D600 or D610, which was also among those named by Dell in December as being fitted with a potentially problematic power cell. At this stage, it's not known whether the laptop the lit up in the US was purchased after the recall, before it, or is even a machine that had been covered by the recall in any case.

However, it raises the possibility that there a quite a few machines out there whose owners, for one reason or another, haven't yet availed themselves of a new, presumably safer battery.

Reg Hardware reader Dave has another interesting point. His Latitude D600 was recently found to be very hot indeed after an hour spent in the gent's bag. Dave says he closed the laptop's lid to put it into hibernation mode only to find an error message pointing out that this had not happened because he had open network-stored database files. All the time the machine had been tightly wrapped in his bag, it had been running full pelt... ®

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