Vaping Injury Claims Increase
Vaping’s been the rage for the past few years, with new outlets seeming to open up daily. Also known as e-cigarettes, vaping devices use a battery to engage a heating coil, which heats liquid nicotine and produces a vapor that users can inhale. It appears, though, that the detrimental effects of nicotine are not the only risk associated with electronic cigarettes.
Personal Injury Claims Rise
Personal injury attorneys have seen a dramatic increase in the number of claims involving injuries caused by e-cigarettes. The vast majority of those claims involve some type of burns, both minor and catastrophic. A Florida man sustained serious burns when an electronic cigarette exploded in his face this year. Medical professionals say he also ingested a piece of the e-cigarette, which caused internal as well as external burns. Doctors medically induced a coma to facilitate his recovery.
As early as 2014, manufacturers of vaping devices learned of the risk of fires tied to the product. A Phoenix resident had a fire in his bedroom when a vaping cartridge overheated while plugged into a charger. In late 2014, and again in early 2015, TSA officials had to extinguish fires caused by e-cigarettes in passenger luggage. The FAA now prohibits e-cigarettes in checked bags.
Safety officials say that lack of regulation is a principal reason for the increase in injury. They point out that most batteries used in e-cigarettes lack any type of over-current protection, a safety feature that prevents a battery from accepting further charge when it is at capacity. As a result, those batteries can overheat or blow up.
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