Jim Adler | The Tough, Smart Lawyer
By Jim Adler April 8, 2016


Vaping is proving to be helpful to some people but extremely dangerous to others. Photo by Vaping 360 (Flickr)

The first e-cigarette to be marketed in the United States was introduced in 2007. The term “vaping” was created in reference to the vapors released when someone uses an e-cigarette, and the term has stuck. While vaping has shown that it can help people quit smoking, it has stirred controversy in other areas. Some activists fear that the accessibility of e-cigarettes will allow young people to get addicted to nicotine to the point where those young people will seek out real cigarettes instead of avoid them. There have also been plenty of battles regarding the ingredients found in the liquids used in e-cigarettes and how much damage those ingredients can do to a person. But one of the battles that is starting to gain momentum is on the topic of the damage being done by exploding e-cigarettes. It is a real problem, and it is bringing even more scrutiny of the e-cigarette business.

According to FEMA, more than 2.5 million Americans use e-cigarettes, and that number rises each year. Between 2009 and 2014, there were 25 incidents of exploding e-cigarettes, and those resulted in nine injuries. Thankfully, there were no casualties in those incidents. But that data, and the fact that more people are buying e-cigarettes every year, has caused the federal government to look into why e-cigarettes explode and what can be done about it. The shape of an e-cigarette (which is essentially the same as a skinny cigar) helps in creating a cylinder that will shoot flames back at the person smoking it if the battery explodes. The other issue is that an e-cigarette explosion is more likely if the batteries in an e-cigarette are not charged exactly according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Aside from the dangers an e-cigarette explosion poses to the person smoking the e-cigarette, there are also dangers to the bystanders who have no idea that an explosion is taking place. If the e-cigarette user is driving a car or a truck and their e-cigarette explodes, it could cause them to drive into innocent pedestrians and do even more damage. If a bus driver with a bus full of passengers has their e-cigarette explode while they are driving, then the results could be devastating. Some people use e-cigarettes in areas where open flames are not allowed, such as a gas station, because e-cigarettes do not require a flame to operate. But if you are using an e-cigarette while filling your tank and the e-cigarette explodes, the situation could become deadly. It is these types of events that are also figuring into the government investigation, and these types of situations could also cause large lawsuits against the person using the e-cigarette and its manufacturer.

The potential for injuries thanks to e-cigarettes is very real, and your injuries could leave you with long-term care needs that you may not be able to pay for. If your e-cigarette starts making a strange hissing sound, then throw it to a safe place immediately. But if you are not lucky enough to be able to avoid the consequences of an e-cigarette explosion, then you should contact an attorney immediately to protect your rights and get the compensation you need for your long-term recovery.

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