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Payless under fire after Texas mom in SUV says there’s another way its shoes ‘light up’

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The light up feature of a pair of kids sneakers got a whole new meaning for one Texas family.

While the Harris County Fire Marshal’s Office investigates a report that a toddler’s shoes started a fire in the family car, Payless ShoeSource company is pulling all of their boys’ Jake Lighted Runner light-up shoes from the shelves, KPRC reported Friday.

Attila and Jovan Virag found their SUV’s backseat charred from what they believe was a fire started by their 2 year-old son’s light-up sneakers that he kicked off in the car.

“I saw the shoe on the ground with the wires sticking up and it was a lightbulb, I knew immediately that’s what it was,” Jovan Virag told KPRC.

A lithium-ion battery inside the shoes may have been the cause of the fire, the Virags believe, though no official cause has been determined.

“You don’t think about … a blinky shoe. It’s cool. You don’t think about the risks,” said Attila Virag.

“Out of an abundance of caution we have removed the Boys’ Jake Lighted Runner from our shelves until we can thoroughly investigate a customer claim regarding that shoe,” said Payless spokesperson Meghan Spreer in a statement. “First and foremost, safety is always a top priority at Payless and we take the claim made by the customer seriously. We have contacted the family, and we will work with them and local authorities to better understand the circumstances of the fire and what may have caused it.”

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Video via NBC News.


Frieda Powers


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