A U.S. study reports that 11 million Americans are now using e-cigarettes or vaping. With the number of users increasing exponentially, safety regulations continue to be nearly nonexistent regarding the devices themselves or the nicotine products. Alaska is now the only state that has not officially reported a vaping-related lung injury. With 29 deaths and almost 1,300 lung-related vaping injuries, reported incidents are still on the increase. Additionally, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has now reported that literally hundreds of severe and serious vaping explosions have occurred from e-cigarettes in the United States.
Lung-Related Vaping Injuries
In October 2019, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released updated medical guidance to help physicians and medical providers identify and care for lung-related vaping injuries. Oftentimes, a doctor may find it challenging to distinguish between influenza or respiratory infections and vaping-related lung conditions. The CDC lists the specific symptoms that are associated with vaping such as cough, shortness of breath, gastrointestinal issues and chest pain. These symptoms can also occur with many other types of medical conditions and patients may need to be treated for other illnesses as well as those that are directly related to vaping.
While an e-cigarette device or vaping device is small, there can be catastrophic injuries when they explode. Some of the most common types of vaping explosions occur due to the following scenarios:
- During the actual use of the e-cigarette or vaping device while in the hands of the user, causing serious injuries to the face, neck, hands, arms, and upper body
- During charging of the device if it overheats and explodes
- During transportation of the e-cigarette or vaping device while in the user’s pocket or purse or on their body, such as in their hands or in their lap.
The number one reason why vaping explosions occur is due to defects in the battery. Batteries are typically composed of lithium-ion, which is notorious for overheating and exploding. When a lithium-ion battery substantially overheats, a large amount of hot gas will continue to build up with no place to release it. This build-up of gas ultimately causes a catastrophic explosion comparable to the force of a pipe bomb or a rocket.
Expect More Regulation
As of January 2020, The Food and Drug Administration has banned most fruit-flavored and mint-flavored nicotine vaping products to mitigate the use of vaping products by teenagers. Additionally, with more lung-related injuries and vaping explosions causing significant injuries and deaths, many advocacy groups are working to attempt to require the federal and state governments to establish stricter regulations to prevent such injuries and deaths in the future.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured due to the inhalation of vaping products, or due to the explosion of a vaping device, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Easton & Easton at 800-461-8259 or online today to discuss how you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries.