Did Your E-Cigarette Explode?
The growing e-cigarette industry signals a switch from traditional cigarettes to e-cigarettes. Unfortunately, the tobacco industry, manufacturers, and e-cigarette retailers often leave consumers vulnerable to another potentially dangerous hazard: explosions.
The explosion of an e-cigarette can cause severe burns, injuries, or even death, and countless reports of these incidents often point to a common cause: the lithium-ion battery.
Most Common Injuries from E-Cigarette Explosions
Currently, there is no official system in place to collect explosion and burn injury data caused by e-cigarettes; however, data suggests incidents and injuries overall are underestimated or unreported, especially since not all injured people visit the emergency room.
Due to how e-cigarettes are used and where they are commonly stored on the person (in a pocket), the four most common injured areas on the body include: thigh, hand, genitals and face. The most common injuries sustained from the explosion of an e-cigarette include, but are not limited to:
- Second- and third-degree burns, including flame or chemical burns
- Injuries caused by flying shrapnel when the device explode
- Facial disfiguration; missing or broken teeth
- Lacerations to the face, eyes, mouth and hands
Why Do Batteries Explode?
Lithium-ion batteries are used in most e-cigarettes because they are rechargeable and carry a higher voltage than typical consumer batteries. Combined with the heating element inside the device, short circuits may raise the temperature and initiate an explosion. Many incidents report batteries exploding while the device is charging.
Consumers may lack awareness of how to properly use, store, or charge the device, and only some devices come equipped with safety features. Additionally, a lack of regulations can allow e-cigarette manufacturers and distributors to avoid displaying a warning for potential explosion hazards.
Manufacturers can be responsible for poor design, insufficient product testing, and overall poor quality control measures. A reputable company may take extreme caution and mark substandard batteries, but another company may purchase those substandard batteries and then relabel and manufacture e-cigarettes with those batteries. Something as simple as a wet, damaged battery or loose coins coming in contact with the device in a pocket can lead to an explosion.
E-cigarette explosions are a relatively new problem. With inconsistent or nonexistent regulations and safety standards governing the safety of e-cigarette products, consumers may unknowingly be purchasing unsafe and defective products, and victims may be left paying for injuries out of pocket.
Holding Parties Accountable
McNicholas and McNicholas, LLP, can investigate an injury you sustained from e-cigarette devices to determine if you have a case and which parties should be held accountable.
Potential negligent parties include, but are not limited to:
Skilled Attorneys in Product Liability and Burn Injury Cases
Whether facing severe or minor injuries, all consumers have a right to safety. If you’ve suffered any injury from an e-cigarette exploding, you should speak with an attorney to navigate this unchartered territory. The e-cigarette injury attorneys McNicholas and McNicholas, LLP, are experienced litigators in both burn injury and product liability cases, and they’re prepared to go up against e-cigarette manufacturers and retailers to get you the compensation you deserve.
If you have suffered injuries after an e-cigarette explosion or malfunction, contact the attorneys at McNicholas and McNicholas, LLP, today. We can recover compensation for your medical bills, loss of income and pain and suffering. Depending on the severity of the injury, your life could be permanently altered at no fault of your own.
The e-cigarette attorneys at McNicholas and McNicholas, LLP, can hold at-fault parties accountable for creating and distributing unsafe, defective products.