August 16, 2010 / 8:39 AM / 10 years ago

REFILE-Overheating iPod delays Tokyo rush-hour train

(Corrects paragraph 2 to read ... “came to a halt” ..., not “half”)

TOKYO, Aug 16 (Reuters) - An overheating Apple (AAPL.O) iPod music player forced delays to a busy Tokyo commuter train during the Friday morning rush hour after passengers complained of a strong burning smell, the rail line operator said on Monday.

The train came to a halt for eight minutes around 8:20 a.m. (2320 on Thursday) in western Tokyo’s Setagaya Ward, 17 km (10.5 miles) from the capital’s centre, while officials investigated the cause of the smell, said a spokesman for Tokyu Corp (9005.T).

“When a member of staff went to investigate inside the train, a passenger came over showing him that the iPod she was listening to had burst apart,” the spokesman said, confirming local media reports. He added that there were no reports of injuries.

Apple Japan had no immediate comment.

Apple, the world’s largest technology company by market value, has come under scrutiny in Japan since the trade ministry last month ordered it to improve safety warnings following cases of overheating in its first generation iPod nano music players.

There have been around 60 such incidents in Japan, including four cases involving minor burns, according to the ministry.

Apple has described the incidents as very rare, blaming the problem on a single battery supplier which it has declined to identify.

The model of the overheating iPod that caused delays on Tokyo’s Denentoshi line was unknown, the Tokyu spokesman said. More than 1 million passengers ride the line each day. (Reporting by Benjamin Shatil; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

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