Electronic cigarettes have been advertised as a healthy alternative to smoking, but a growing number of explosions have seriously injured smokers who have launched million dollar lawsuits against the vapor companies.
Warning: Mildly graphic images of injuries below
E-cig smokers in California launched three separate lawsuits this week against vapor companies for injuries suffered when their product exploded.
The smokers’ attorney, Gregory Bentley, told the Los Angeles Times he had filed suit against the e-cig manufacturer Flawless Vapes & Supplies LLC as well as the Bakersfield stores selling their products.
E-cigarette explosions are becoming all too common as this industry is taking off. Consumers have the right to expect that products have been properly designed, manufactured and tested for safety before they are put into the marketplace.
The three California lawsuits allege the lithium ion batteries used in the e-cigs were unsafe and the companies failed to warn consumers of the dangers.
In October, a California woman won the country’s first liability lawsuit against an e-cig company when she was awarded almost $2 million after being badly burned when the battery on her e-cig caught fire in her car.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency said a couple dozen e-cig explosions between 2009 and 2014 have injured at least nine people. There have been several serious injuries in the past few months, however.
“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.”
— Inquisitr News (@theinquisitr) November 23, 2015
A 29-year-old Colorado Springs man remains hospitalized Tuesday afternoon after an e-cig exploded in his mouth while he was smoking it. The explosion broke his neck, fractured his face, burned his mouth, and shattered his teeth.
Cordero Caples was using a Kangertech e-cig when it exploded Friday night, his sister told CBS News.
“Any sudden move can cause him to be in a paralyzed state, and that is something we don’t want. He’s going to need 24-hour care for a while and constant monitoring from family and friends and loved ones.”
A few days ago, a young couple was badly burned when the e-cig they were charging exploded as they drove down the freeway. Jeremy Markle told WPXI the explosion of the E-Fest Cig Battery burned his girlfriend’s hands and drove a hole through the floor of the car leaving scorch marks on the seats.
“It was an instant flash. I mean, the battery just instantly started glowing red, it was like a blacksmith heating metal, just glowing.”
— CBS News (@CBSNews) November 25, 2015
Earlier this month, an Arkansas man found himself in the hospital after his new e-cig exploded while he was smoking it. Josh Swartz told Arkansas Matters the Fu Chai Mechanical Mod was only two weeks old when it burst into flame, burning his mouth, throat, and hand and shattering his teeth.
“I put it to my mouth and as soon as I pressed the button on the bottom, the device exploded.”
In October, a 21-year-old South Florida man was put into a medically induced coma after an e-cig he was smoking exploded in his face. Evan Spahlinger was smoking in his room when the e-cig exploded, sending the lithium battery plunging down his throat and into his lungs where it exploded a second time, his sister told the New York Daily News.
“I found my brother not breathing with his whole face burned and his neck burned and trying to throw up a little or maybe he was gasping for air.”
The multi-million dollar industry is growing fast, but has little regulation. In October, the Department of Transportation banned e-cigs from airline passenger luggage citing their potential to explode mid-flight.