I unplugged my computer charger from a multi-plug extension cord with many empty sockets and the wires were still tangled on the floor so I pulled on the charger to get it loose, but I accidentally dropped it onto the cord. Suddenly there was a small bright spark when the plug hit the cord and it tripped a breaker and the lights went out. The extension cord is type F and looks like this one.

Everything still works fine, but I wonder what exactly happened that made the breaker trip. Any ideas? I would guess that the plug fell into the socket at an angle or something, but I don't know if that would make it trip. It could've also been the other end of the computer charger, but it's much wider than the plug pins for example.


2 Answers 2


That small bright spark you saw was probably the prongs of the charger, with the weight of the charger behind it, penetrating through the extension cord insulation and hitting one or both of the extension cord's conductors.

You should carefully inspect the extension cord for the damage. It potentially might be a shock hazard if it were to get wet at all, so its probably best to either wrap with electrician tape to protect casual contact if you intend to continue to use the extension cord.

Most of the time the electrical tape will be sufficient for guarding against a shock hazard but realistically, if you're in doubt, get a new one.


The "small bright spark" indicates to me that some sort of electrical short-circuit occurred when you dropped your charger plug. It may be hard to spot but there is probably a small darkened area where the short actually happened.

I recommend that you unplug all of these parts, carefully inspect for damage, and then put it back the way you want with taking care to watch for anything unusual.

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