We all make cracks about the 360 getting red rings left and right, overheating here and there, but it was all in good fun. Hell, remember when Microsoft had to recall power cords for its original Xbox?
Okay, maybe you don't, but it did happen several years ago.
Here's another reminder that electronics can be hazardous. A house in Little Rock, Arkansas burned down while no one was home, causing more than $100,000 worth of property damages. Apparently, this has happened twice before, both in Illinois where an infant was killed, and in Texas where a teenager was injured; not surprisingly, both families sued Microsoft.
The source of the fire was traced to an Xbox 360 power cord, as Little Rock Fire Department Captain Jason Weaver explained, "It was melted and it looked like they had it against the wall in on edge and things like that need a little space to dissipate heat."
Microsoft estimates the risk at 1 in 10,000 so it's not exactly something to panic over. Still, gamers can take certain precautions, like unplugging their consoles when it's not in use, making sure the cords aren't bent, or keeping the power block off the floor so there's less friction.
I'm probably not going to do any of those things so if I suddenly stop posting, you'll know what happened. Just don't sue Microsoft in my name.