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Glass Experts Warn About Exploding TV Stands

BOSTON (CBS) - Glass experts are warning about an unseen danger that could be lurking in thousands of homes. It is the latest in the string of spontaneous explosions of products made with tempered glass.

Denise Young was stunned when she heard her kids screaming that there was glass all over the living room. "They said the TV just blew up and I said what do you mean the TV just blew up?" she explained. The glass base of her Philips TV shattered into hundreds of tiny pieces. "It was a mess," she said describing the glass all over the room.

That's just the way it happened for a woman who shot video of her glass TV base that also shattered all over her living room shortly after she had gone to bed. "It was a big explosion," she said. "If anyone had been in the room when this explosion occurred, I'm afraid someone would have been very badly injured," she said.

Below her post are a string of similar stories in the comment section. "We had the exact same thing happen," one woman posted. Another man wrote, "Woke up this morning to exactly the same thing you show in this video."

Glass expert Mark Meshalum has heard these stories before about all kinds of products made with tempered glass. "It breaks in very small pieces and so yes, you might still get cut, but it will not be deep, serious lacerations," he explained.

So what causes this type of glass to shatter? Experts like Meshalum say microscopic imperfections can occur during the manufacturing process. While it's not clear what caused the Young's breakage, these imperfections can grow and migrate, weakening the glass until it suddenly shatters without warning.

Philips wouldn't tell us if others have reported similar problems with their TV sets, but hundreds of complaints have been filed with the Consumer Product Safety Commission involving different tempered glass products.

Denise thinks this is something that people should know about. "It was the worst feeling in the world to have something like that and know that your kids could have been hurt. I think that people need to be made aware of this hazard could be in their home," she said.

When the Youngs reached out to Philips, they replaced the family's TV. The company also said they are now manufacturing their TV bases with a combination of acrylic and plastic.


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