E-Cigarette Explosions And Filed Lawsuits
LipsigLawyers.com states that over the last decade, vaporizers, or electronic cigarettes have already become a $3.5 billion industry, drawing in many into a “safer” smoking community. However, that simply has not been the case as e-cigarette explosion victims are taking action by filing lawsuits for their suffering. Anyone who has suffered physical, emotional, or financial harm as a result of vaping can file a lawsuit.
Why Do E-Cigarettes Randomly Explode?
The U.S. Fire Administration explains explosion process in a 2014 report as follows:
“Like hoverboards, e-cigarettes are powered by a lithium-ion battery, which contains electrolytes that can combust when overheated. These batteries are also present in cell phones and laptops, and there have been rare incidents when these devices have overheated and caught fire. However, because of the cylindrical shape of e-cigarettes, either the battery, the device itself or both are propelled when the battery overheats, causing an explosion and increasing the likelihood for the fire to spread.”
In 2014, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Administration conducted a comprehensive report of the e-cigarette fires and explosions. The key findings are listed below:
- More than 2.5 million Americans are using electronic cigarettes(e-
- Fires or explosions caused by e-cigarettes are rare.
- Twenty-five separate incidents of explosion and fire involving an e-cigarette were reported in the United States media between 2009 and August 2014.
- Nine injuries and no deaths were associated with these 25 incidents.Two of the injuries were serious burns.
- Most of the incidents occurred while the battery was charging.
- The shape and construction of e-cigarettes can make them more likely than other products with lithium-ion batteries to behave like “flaming rockets” when a battery fails.
- Lithium-ion batteries must be charged in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Using power sources not approved by the manufacturer to recharge a lithium-ion battery can result in an explosion and fire.
Pursued Lawsuits After An Explosion Happened
So far, several class action lawsuits were filed against tobacco companies and in some cases, the stores that sold them the charging device. Three highly publicized class action lawsuits are listed below.
- A 17-year-old whose e-cigarette exploded in his pocket while in class at Clovis East High School.
- A Naples, Florida man named Evan Spahlinger, who suffered severe internal burns and was put into a medically induced coma after an e-cigarette exploded in his mouth, allegedly burning his mouth, face, throat, esophagus, and lungs, according to his attorney.
- Vicente Garza, whose e-cigarette exploded in bed and wound up costing Mr. Garza his left index finger.
In January 2017, an e-cigarette exploded inside an Iowa man’s mouth. The man was seriously injured when an e-cigarette exploded in his mouth – scorching his skin and knocking out seven of his teeth. Doctors had to remove chunks of plastic from his throat and lips.
Age Restriction And Side Effects Of Using The E-Cigarettes
Since they became available for purchase in 2007, e-cigarettes have become increasingly popular among teenagers and tobacco smokers trying to quit. Most states’ minimum age for e-cigarette sales and other tobacco products is 18, though two states and 225 localities (such as Washington, D.C. and New York City) require buyers be 21 years old for all tobacco products.
Side effects for eligible victims may include the following:
- Popcorn Lung (coughing, shortness of breath)
- Chronic Bronchitis
- Breathing problems
- Burns, scarring, or other injuries from e-cig explosion
Although it is not entirely known how frequently e-cigarette batteries are likely to explode, they still pose quite a serious risk for the user and should be handled with caution.
Tom Moverman established the Lipsig Lawyers Firm with Harry Lipsig and his partners in 1989; The firm’s focus is in products liability, personal injury, construction accidents, car accidents and medical malpractice.