Exploding E-Cigarettes – Why is it Happening, and Who’s to Blame?
Everyone knows that smoking cigarettes is a serious hazardous to your health, but over the last decade, many smokers have kicked their habit thanks to the rise in popularity of electronic cigarettes (also called e-cigs, e-cigarettes, or personal vaporizers).
Unfortunately, with the emergence of this new technology, we also see a rise in injuries caused by the catastrophic failure of high-drain batteries used in these devices.
The rise in news coverage of e-cigarette explosions, fires, and burn injuries has brought many questions to the forefront.
- Are e-cigarettes safe?
- Why are so many e-cigs exploding?
- Who bears liability for an injury caused by an exploding EC?
How E-Cigs Work
Electronic cigarettes work by rapidly heating “e-juice” (most-often containing vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol, flavoring agents, and nicotine) through an atomizer, and emitting the resulting vapor through a mouthpiece.
Electronic cigarettes are fitted with a high-capacity, high-drain Lithium-Ion battery. These batteries are very sensitive to heat and damage. Lithium batteries have a tendency to explode when they reach and exceed a certain temperature threshold, and the slightest physical damage may compromise the integrity of the entire cell.
Due to the proximity of these cigarettes to sensitive body parts of the body (fingers, face, lips and eyes), an explosion is likely to cause serious injuries such as chipped teeth, burns, blistering, lacerations, and even blindness.
Most quality Lithium-ion batteries are fitted with technology which use software to detect extreme temperatures, cutting off power to the device. Due to the massive influx of e-cigarettes into the U.S. market, it is only natural that some less-scrupulous manufacturers have produced and sold defectively-manufactured (and generally unsafe) batteries.
That said, retailers and importers are charged with a legal responsibility of ensuring that they source and sell devices that have passed multi-level safety testing, and are safe for their intended use. It is this “chain of distribution” that often makes bringing an e-cig injury lawsuit very complex, but with the help of an experienced product liability attorney, you still have a good chance at winning your case and recovering money damages.
E-Cig Injuries in The News
Last September, 23-year-old James Lauria (of Destin, Florida) was left severely injured when an e-cig exploded in his mouth as he was using it. He suffered a cornea burn, and a neck and finger fracture. On top of that, the device blew a hole through his palate, with flames traveling down to his chest as well as parts of his face.
In 2013, Jennifer Reis, traveling with her husband, was injured by an exploding electronic cigarette battery. The explosion happened when she plugged the device’s battery into her car’s charging port. Soon after, liquid started oozing out of the lithium-ion battery, followed shortly by a strange smell and an explosion. Her dress proceeded to catch fire and chemicals spewed onto her lap, causing serious burns.
Unfortunately, these are not isolated events. It seems every week we hear of another person injured due to an e-cig explosion. The following is only a small sample of the stories reported in just the past year.
- Orange County man loses eye after e-cigarette explosion
- Ogden teen hospitalized after e-cigarette explodes
- E-cigarette explodes ‘like a bomb’ in man’s mouth mid-vape
- E-cigarette reportedly explodes in Paso Robles teen’s face
- Valley teenager injured after e-cig explodes; faces surgery tomorrow to repair burns
- Family escapes massive house fire after e-cigarette exploded as it charged overnight
- Naples Man Files Lawsuit After E-Cigarette Explodes
- Teen recovering from facial, neck burns caused by classmate’s exploding e-cigarette battery
- Woman Files Lawsuit After Losing Teeth When E-Cigarette Explodes
- Man says e-cigarette battery exploded in his pocket
- 14-year-old boy left blinded after e-cigarette explodes at Brooklyn mall
Injured by an E-Cigarette? You May Be Owed Money.
If you’ve been injured by a defective or faulty product, it is imperative that you discuss your situation with a product liability attorney.
Find an attorney who provides free consultations, and one which takes cases “on contingency” (meaning you don’t owe them a dime unless they win your case). This way, there is no financial risk on your part. Your attorney is now tasked with doing the leg work, while you focus on recovering from your injuries.
If we do not hold manufacturers responsible for their negligence, they have no reason to produce a safer product. Through a lawsuit, you could make a lasting difference within the company and prevent others from experiencing similar injuries in the future.
If you would like to discuss the facts of your case (for free) with an experienced product liability lawyer right now, call 1-877-659-2580 or fill in the contact form found on this page. Our product liability lawyers take these cases on contingency, and are happy to answer your questions explain the options available to you at no cost.