An Idaho man is sharing graphic photos and frightening details of an e-cigarette explosion that left him hospitalized, hoping others will rethink their own use of controversial e-cigs.
Andrew Hall says after a year of vaping, an e-cigarette exploded in his face, “I’ve lost at least seven teeth, second degree burns to face and neck and have been pulling chunks of plastic, teeth and foreign objects from mouth, throat and lips,” Hall posted to Facebook.
Hall was admitted to the intensive care unit and says his home sustained damage from the explosion as well… these injuries to a man who claims to have a year’s worth of experience using e-cigarettes, “I never had any issues with over heating or concerns until the unfortunate happened,” Hall said.
Hall is hardly the first victim of e-cigarette explosions. Last year an Albany, New York, man said a vaporizer exploded in his face, leaving a hole in his tongue and burns to his hands. A Phoenix man blames an e-cigarette for burns to his leg. According to KNXV, the e-cig went off inside the man’s pocket!
These cautionary tales will not be the last. E-cigarettes are increasing in popularity and users need to know what they can do to prevent these injuries.
Lithium batteries are often blamed for explosions, but the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association, or TVECA, says more often victims are using mismatched chargers (a problem we’re also seeing with some smartphones and hoverboards). More advice from TVECA:
- Use only the batteries and charging accessories that come with your product.
- Do not put any e-cigarette devices in your pocket or anywhere near coins. They can rub against the product and short-circuit the lithium battery.
So what’s being done about it?
The FDA announced in 2016 it would be taking over the regulation of e-cigarettes and hookah tobacco. According to the FDA, e-cigarette use skyrocketed from 1.5 percent in 2011 to 16 percent in 2015, a 900 percent increase.
Under the new rules:
- Businesses cannot sell vaping products to those under the age of 18, and they must check photo IDs.
- Retailers cannot give free samples of tobacco products.
- Vaping products cannot be sold in vending machines.
The FDA has not specifically addressed e-cigarette explosions, but does recognize that cigarette smoking has decreased as electronic-cigarette use has gone up.
Hall hopes the right people see his Facebook warning, “I know vapes help people quit smoking cigarettes and that’s amazing. I just want to bring to light this is possible that they can explode without warning,” he says.