E-Cigarette Explosion Lawsuits: From Puff to Court

by | May 17, 2024 | Personal Injury | 0 comments

  1. Home
  2. /
  3. Personal Injury
  4. /
  5. E-Cigarette Explosion Lawsuits: From...

Introduced as a seemingly innovative alternative to traditional tobacco smoking, E-cigarettes, or electronic cigarettes, have become a ubiquitous presence among the public in the United States. These handy battery-powered devices have witnessed a surge in popularity in recent years, especially among the younger demographic.

The glamour of flavored liquids in attractive devices along with the perception of reduced harm compared to conventional smoking have contributed to the widespread use of e-cigarettes. However, the seemingly innocuous nature of these devices conceals a darker side too. Let’s explore through this blog about such a subject that has garnered attention. It’s all about E-cigarette explosions and vape explosion lawsuits.

E-cigarette explosion lawsuits in the U.S mirror the dangers of vape explosion injuries and raising concerns about the safety of these electronic vaping products.

Let’s kick start with the anatomy and physiology of E-cigarettes for your better understanding about its explosion dangers and consequences.

E-Cigarettes: What are they?

E-cigarettes, fondly called as “e-cigs,” “vapes,” “e-hookahs,” “vape pens,” are electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS). They can disguise in any forms like regular cigarettes, cigars, pipes or even USB flash drives, pens, etc.

The irony is that E-cigarettes are often marketed in the United States as a smoking cessation aid and a safer alternative to traditional tobacco products. This outlook had in turn created a huge fan base for it among the youth.

“In 2023, 2.13 million U.S. middle and high school students used e-cigarettes in the past 30 days, including 4.6% of middle school students and 10.0% of high school students”. Says the CDC in the National Youth Tobacco Survey, 2023.

However, as per the American Cancer Society, it is not recommended.  No e-cigarette has been approved by The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any E-cigarette as a safe and effective smoking cessation product.

How does E- Cigarettes work?

E-cigarettes contain three elements, a battery, a heating element, a cartridge or tank that holds a liquid containing nicotine, flavorings, etc., and a mouthpiece or opening. These devices work by heating the liquid, which is then turned into an aerosol and inhaled into the lungs.

The use of E-cigarettes is called “vaping” because many people think that E-cigarettes create a vapor, which is inhaled. However, the science is that E-cigarettes produce an aerosol which is not vapor.

Components of E-Cigarette Aerosol

The following are the main constituents of the aerosol formed in E-cigarettes

  • Nicotine
  • Flavoring chemicals like diacetyl
  • Volatile organic compounds and some ultrafine particles
  • Carcinogenic chemicals like formaldehyde
  • Heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead

Like traditional cigarettes, passive smoking also occurs in E-cigarettes, where the bystanders can also breathe in this aerosol when the E-cig user exhales the aerosol into the air.

E-Cigarette Explosions

Beneath the surface of the e-cigarette phenomenon lies a concerning trend – the occurrence of e-cigarette explosions. These incidents, though relatively rare, have gained attention due to their potential for causing serious injuries.

More than 2,000 e-cigarette explosion and burn injuries are thought to have sent users to US hospital emergency rooms between 2015 and 2017, according to a 2018 study.

Why do E-cigarettes explode?

The lithium-ion batteries powering these devices, when mishandled or malfunctioning, can lead to catastrophic consequences. The explosions are typically linked to the over-heating of lithium-ion batteries. When the lithium-ion vape battery gets too hot, it combusts as oxygen reacts with the extremely flammable liquid inside. This leads to fires or E-cigarette explosions, called ‘thermal runaway’.

Types of E-Cigarette Explosion Injuries

How bad is a vape explosion?

E-cigarette explosion can lead to the following injuries which may end up even in death.

  • Broken bones
  • Deep cuts and bleeding
  • Loss of teeth, eyes, and fingers
  • Blindness
  • Holes in the tongue and mouth
  • Loss of teeth
  • Permanent scars
  • Severe burns
  • Death

What to do after an E –cigarette explosion?

  1. Seek medical attention for minor injuries, for server injuries, call 911.
  2. Stop severe bleeding as soon as possible.
  3. Look for signs of shock, such as fainting, and shallow breaths.
  4. Report a vape fire or explosion or any other undesired health problems with the vape device to FDA.
  5. Consult an expert attorney for product defect and related compensation.

E-Cigarette Battery Explosion Lawsuits

Can you sue for exploding vape?

Yes, as victims of e-cigarette explosions seek justice, a growing number of Vape battery explosion lawsuits have emerged against manufacturers and distributors. These legal actions aim to hold accountable those responsible for inadequate safety measures, substandard manufacturing practices, or insufficient warnings about the potential risks.

Some of the E-cigarette brands involved in E-cigarette explosion controversy are

  • VGOD
  • LG Chemical
  • Samsung SDI

How to prove e cigarette explosion injuries?

Proving e-cigarette explosion injuries is crucial when pursuing an E-cigarette explosion lawsuit for compensation. Establishing a strong case requires careful documentation and evidence. Consult with a qualified E-cigarette explosion injury attorney to discuss the details of your situation. They can assess the strength of your case, guide you through the legal process, and help gather the necessary evidence.

Here are the steps to help prove e-cigarette explosion injuries.

Medical Documentation

Seek immediate medical attention after the incident. Comprehensive medical documentation is crucial to establishing a connection between the e-cigarette explosion and your injuries. Keep thorough records of all damages incurred, including medical bills, and any other related expenses. These documents will be crucial in calculating the compensation.

Photographic Evidence

Take photos of the e-cigarette device, batteries, and any remaining components after the explosion. Photograph injuries, property damage, and the scene of the incident. These visual records can serve as powerful evidence in the court.

Preserve Evidence

Preserve the e-cigarette device, batteries, and any related components in the condition they were in immediately after the explosion. Your attorney may want to have these items examined by experts to determine the cause of the explosion.

Eyewitness Statements

If there were witnesses to the e-cigarette explosion, gather their statements. Eyewitness accounts can provide additional perspectives on the incident and strengthen your case.

Product Identification

Identify and keep records of the brand, model, and any serial numbers or batch numbers of the e-cigarette device and batteries involved in the explosion. This information is essential for determining liability.

Expert Witnesses

Expert testimony from professionals with expertise in product safety, engineering, or battery technology can provide valuable insights into the cause of the explosion and support your case.

Manufacturer Negligence

If there is evidence of manufacturer negligence, such as a design flaw or manufacturing defect, it can strengthen your case. Your attorney may investigate the manufacturing process and safety testing procedures of the e-cigarette.

Product Recalls or Complaints

Check if there have been any product recalls or consumer complaints related to the specific e-cigarette device or batteries involved in the incident. This information can be useful in demonstrating a history of safety issues.

Expert Medical Opinions

Obtain expert medical opinions that link your injuries directly to the e-cigarette explosion. This may involve consulting with specialists who can testify about the nature and extent of your injuries.

Role of an E-Cigarette Explosion Attorney

An attorney specializing in vape battery explosion lawsuits play a crucial role in helping individuals navigate the legal complexities associated with injuries resulting from explosion injuries. Attorneys will provide initial consultations to evaluate the merits of the case. They will review the details of the incident, assess liability, and inform clients about their legal rights and options.

Attorneys will conduct a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding the e-cigarette explosion. This includes collecting evidence such as medical records, photographs, eyewitness statements, and preserving the e-cigarette device and batteries.

The legal team would help the plaintiff determine potential liable parties, which may include the e-cigarette manufacturer, distributor, retailer, or other entities involved in the supply chain.

Collaborate with expert witnesses, such as engineers, product safety specialists, or medical professionals, and guide the plaintiff through the complexities of product liability laws.

Once the preparations are over, they will prepare and file the necessary legal documents to initiate a lawsuit against the responsible parties. This includes drafting the complaint, outlining the legal basis for the claim, and specifying the damages sought.

Attorneys will advocate for their clients and strive to secure compensation that adequately covers medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages. Negotiations with the opposing party or parties would help to reach a fair settlement. If a settlement cannot be reached, the attorney will represent the plaintiff in court. This involves presenting the case, examining witnesses, and arguing legal points before a judge and jury during the trial.

E-Cig Explosion Cases: Settlements

Case 1

After an e-cigarette battery exploded in his pocket, a Florida resident was granted a damages award exceeding $15 million. Manuel Ortego, the plaintiff, sued Vapor Life LLC after the battery in his e-cigarette burst in his pocket. His lower extremities sustained third-degree burns as a result of the battery explosion.

The lawsuit claimed that a design defect in the battery prevented it from providing adequate thermal protection. On October 19, 2021, a jury in South Florida granted Manuel $21,000 as payment for his medical bills and $15 million as compensation for the victim’s suffering.

Case 2

In July 2017, a Missouri man injured by an exploding vape. The victim was “smoking his Tobeco Super Tank Mini e-cigarette device when suddenly and without warning, the e-cigarette and battery incorporated therein exploded while in use”.

The E-cigarette exploded in his face, shattering multiple teeth, cracking his jaw, resulting in burns, and damaging the nerves in his mouth and left arm. The man says there was nothing to stop the battery from overheating and that it was incorrectly labelled as having a 38 amp rating when in fact it only had a 10 amp rating. In 2023, the victim won more than $2.3 million in the lawsuit against the company that supplied the device’s battery

E-Cigarette Explosion: Death Cases

According to the Tampa Bay Times, a 38-year-old man died in Florida in May 2018 after a vape pen shot two projectiles into his head and started a fire that scorched 80% of his body.

Additionally, according to The Washington Post, a 24-year-old man passed away two days after the carotid artery in his neck was severed by a vape pen explosion in the Fort Worth region.

To sum up, the unpredictable nature of these explosions has raised questions about the safety standards of e-cigarette manufacturing. It also reveals the importance of the need for greater awareness among users regarding proper usage and maintenance.

Despite the potential benefits in harm reduction for adult smokers, concerns persist about the impact of e-cigarettes on youth initiation to nicotine use and addiction.

The booming vape explosion injury lawsuits underscore the importance of consumer safety and the need for greater transparency within the e-cigarette industry.

Moving forward, it is imperative for users to be well-informed about the potential hazards associated with e-cigarettes and to exercise caution in handling these devices. Manufacturers, too, must prioritize safety through rigorous testing, clear warnings, and continuous improvement of design and manufacturing processes. Additionally, regulators play a pivotal role in setting and enforcing industry standards that prioritize consumer safety over profit margins.

Recent Posts

Are You Subscribed?

We send out a roundup email once or twice a month when new articles are published.


This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Medlegal 360

MedLegal360 is a specialized author in medical-legal matters, providing clear, authoritative insights on healthcare legislation and personal injury litigation for professionals and the curious.

Related Posts