The ~70 incidents recorded in the US and Canada are more than double the figure that Samsung previously disclosed. On September 1, the company said it had knowledge of around 35 incidents where the Note 7 overheated, caught fire, or exploded. Samsung estimated then that the battery issue causing these incidents should only affect 1 in every 42,000 units.
It’s likely that not every incident of the 70 reported in the US involved a Note 7 actually catching fire. The Health Canada statement only mentions “overheating,” and it’s reasonably safe to assume that some of the incidents were phones that simply got hot while charging, potentially within normal operating range. With the media frenzy surrounding the recall, and multiple reports of injury and property damage, it’s likely that more than a few Note 7 users preferred to err on the side of caution.
Still, 70 reports is a significant number that makes it easier to understand why Samsung decided to conduct a complete recall, rather than a limited one.