Florida Man Dies from Exploding Vape Pen

An exploding vape pen caused the death of a Florida man earlier this month. Unfortunately, this is becoming increasingly common as vape manufacturers purchase their cheap ion batteries from countries with low regulatory standards.

About Vape Pens

Vape pens are also known as e-cigarettes or e-cigs are an electronic nicotine delivery system that produces a heated vapor, resembling smoke.  They were first commercialized in China in 2004. However, now U.S. consumers make up 43% of the electronic cigarette market, which equates to $8 billion in the world market. This equals more than 2.5 million people in the U.S. are using them.

Using a heating element, the devices vaporize a liquid solution, which can deliver various levels of nicotine. Some activate the heating coil automatically when a user takes a drag from the device. Some are manual. Many use a lithium-ion battery to power the device.

Death from Exploding Vape Pen

The autopsy report of a 38-year-old Florida man showed that he died when parts of an exploding vape pen penetrated his head. One of the pieces removed from his head featured the logo of Smok-E Mountain Mech Works. This company is based in the Philippines. Smok-E Mountain makes a particular type of vape pen called a mechanical mod. Compared with other types of e-cigs, mechanical mods give users more direct access to the battery. Also, the device does not use inner circuitry to regulate the voltage.

Fire fighters discovered his body while extinguishing the flames of his home. The man suffered thermal injuries to 80% of his body including his chest, shoulder, abdomen, back, arm and hand. A U.S. Fire Administration report examined incidents from 2009 to 2016 said fires from e-cigarette explosions are not common. However,  the shape and construction of e-cigarettes can make them act like “flaming rockets” when the battery dies.

Limited Regulations

The reason why so many are being hurt is there is a severe lack of regulations, codes, or laws governing the safety of the batteries in e-cigarettes. Agencies are starting to recognize the danger. In April 2017, the FDA conducted a two-day public workshop on “Battery Safety Concerns in Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS)”. This was an attempt to gather information on battery overheating, fire, explosion, and other failures. The FDA then gave away the responsibility and said manufacturers should test the batteries better. Raising the manufacturer standards means that many companies are taking shortcuts.

Companies purchase substandard lower wattage batteries then re-wrap them and pretend they are safe. Re-wrapped batteries often advertise inaccurate ratings like indicating a 30-ampere rating that was only 20 A. If a product calls for a 30 A but if a user is using a 20 A battery, then the battery will stress and could possibly explode.

We Want to Help Victims

Therefore, if an exploding vape pen burned you, you may have a claim against the manufacturers of the device and battery. This means you may be able to recoup damages for your injury.

Contact the Michael Brady Lynch Firm today for a free consultation to learn more about seeking justice. Compensation may be available for any medical expenses associated with this ordeal, as well as for your physical and emotional suffering. There is no obligation.

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