Thousands of people throughout Maryland use electronic cigarettes, also called “e-cigarettes,” “e-cigs,” “vaporizers,” or “vapes.” Many people use e-cigarettes in an effort to quit smoking traditional cigarettes and become healthier. However, there appear to be other dangers associated with e-cigarettes that some users have not expected. Many vaping products, like e-cigarettes, are powered by lithium-ion batteries which can malfunction, causing them to overheat and explode. Vape pen explosions may cause serious burns and other injuries, or even the wrongful death of the consumer.
If you or a family member has been burned or suffered another serious injury due to an e-cig or vape explosion, you should speak with an experienced Maryland injury lawyer. The Maryland e-cig explosion attorneys at Bennett & Heyman, P.A. are prepared to fight for compensation for your injuries. E-cig explosions are an extremely dangerous manufacturing defect that consumers should have been warned about, and we will work tirelessly to hold negligent manufacturers and retailers accountable. To schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, call us at (410) 727-2168, or contact our law offices online.
E-Cig and Vape Pen Battery Explosion Statistics
The term “e-cigarette” encompasses a whole class of devices that are used as an electronic nicotine delivery system. E-cigs typically utilize lithium-ion batteries to produce inhalable vapors that simulate cigarette smoke. If these batteries contain manufacturing defects, or are shipped or stored under improper conditions, they can develop hidden flaws that allow for catastrophic overheating, leading to fires and explosions. Other factors that can cause or contribute to lithium-ion battery explosions in e-cigarettes include:
- Using a charger other than the charger provided with the e-cig
- Using rewrapped or low-quality batteries
- Using damaged batteries
Many e-cig explosions occur when the battery is charging. It has also been reported that explosions have occurred when the e-cig is being used or transported in a person’s pocket or purse.
Statistics show that there have been over 195 reported e-cig fire and explosion accidents in the United States between January 2009 and December 2016. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in 68% of these 195 reported incidents, 133 acute injuries were sustained. Here is the breakdown of when e-cig explosions occurred:
- 61 incidents occurred when an e-cig was in someone’s pocket
- 60 incidents occurred when an e-cig was in use
- 48 incidents happened when an e-cig battery was being charged
- 18 incidents happened when an e-cig was in storage
- 7 incidents did not report whether the e-cig was in use, in storage, or being charged
- 1 incident occurred while in transit on a cargo aircraft
Some individuals and media stations have also reported components of e-cigs being ejected across a room and igniting flammable items wherever they landed.
Types of Injuries Caused by E-Cigs or Vapes
An e-cig explosion may cause a variety of injuries, which could be disabling or even fatal for the victim. Of the injuries that were reported due to e-cigs, there were about 80 moderate injuries, 38 severe injuries, and 15 minor injuries. The other 62 cases declined to report what kind of injury was sustained. Injuries that can occur when a vape explodes include:
- Burn injuries, such as second degree burns or third degree burns
- Facial injuries
- Groin or thigh injuries from pens being stored in pockets, bags, or wallets
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Soft tissue injuries
- Tongue/mouth injuries (oral injuries)
Individuals who have suffered burn injuries from e-cig explosions often have to undergo expensive and painful wound care and skin graft procedures. If you have suffered one of the e-cig injuries listed above, or if you or a family member sustained other types of injuries from a defective vape pen, you should speak with the Maryland e-cig explosion accident lawyers of Bennett & Heyman, P.A. right away.
Filing Your E-Cigarette Injury Claim
If you wish to file a personal injury claim or lawsuit in Maryland because of a vape explosion accident, you should be aware that Maryland has a three-year statute of limitations on personal injury cases. The statute of limitations dictates the amount of time an individual has to file their case. In other words, if you want to file a personal injury case against a retailer or manufacturer of e-cigs and vapes, you should do so well before three years pass from the date of your injury.
However, there is little reason to wait so long to file an e-cig explosion injury lawsuit. The sooner you file your case, the easier it will be to litigate, for several reasons:
- The memory of any witnesses to the e-cig explosion will be fresh.
- The evidence you will need to prove your case could be destroyed or lost if you wait too long.
- The sooner you file your case, the sooner you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries.
Maryland E-Cig Injury Attorneys Can Help You Recover Compensation
The Maryland e-cig injury lawyers at Bennett & Heyman, P.A. represent vape explosion victims in Baltimore and across the state. We have extensive experience litigating various types of personal injury cases, including cases in which exploding batteries led victims to sustain severe burn injuries, and we will aggressively put this experience to work for you. To schedule a free consultation about a lithium-ion battery injury in Maryland, contact us online, or call (410) 727-2168 today.