If you’ve caught a domestic flight recently, you might have noticed something a little different about the pre-flight safety demonstration.

On Qantas and Virgin flights, cabin crew have been tacking a warning onto the end of their scripts along the lines of “If you lose your phone in flight do not move the seat and contact a crew member immediately.”

The obvious reason you shouldn’t reach between the seats is because you might get your hand stuck and/or mangled, right?

Wrong.

The actual reason the crew advise you not to try and retrieve your cellular device is because it’s at risk of catching fire and exploding.

noooo but i just got a booster on candy crush!! !!!!!

This has genuinely been happening.

People have accidentally dropped their phones between chairs and promptly adjusted their seats to try and grab ’em. In some instances, adjusting the chair has resulted in the phone getting crushed and spontaneously combusting.

PEDESTRIAN.TV got in contact with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s Corporate Communications Manager, Peter Gibson, who confirmed the danger. When asked if the hot fire phones were an explosive rumour or the truth, Gibson had to say this:

“Yep, that’s right. All about stopping phones being crushed accidentally and catching on fire.”

He went on to explain that people have been dropping their phones and moving their seats around to try and retrieve ’em. The seats then roll over the phone, crushing the battery. When a lithium battery is crushed, it starts to get very hot, and smoulders. Eventually, it catches fire.

“It’s happened a few times around the world,” he added. “It’s happened in Australia, and the person who’s done it has immediately called cabin crew. In one case, they picked up the phone with tongs and dumped it in a sink full of water. In another case, they got out the fire extinguisher and gave it a blast.”

Heavy.

This video, released by the Australian Government, confirms the occurrence in this mega Dumb Ways To Die-esque video:

So there you have it. Don’t reach for the hotline blinger, folks. Even if you are about to beat level 149 on Candy Crush.

Image: Getty Images / Joel Guay / Shodanphotos