Injured - The FindLaw Accident, Injury and Tort Law Blog

E-Cigarette Injury Lawsuits on the Rise

Perhaps smokers see them as a healthier option to regular tobacco, or maybe they're allowed in more places than your classic Marlboros. But for whatever reason, the use of e-cigarettes, vape pens, and other electronic smoking devices has exploded over the last decade.

And the batteries for those devices have apparently been exploding as well, according to recent lawsuits. Over 120 lawsuits alleging injuries from explosions and fires caused by e-cigarette batteries were filed last year alone. And e-cigarette litigation doesn't show any signs of slowing.

Blowing Smoke, Blowing Up

Courthouse News has some of the gory details of recent vape battery lawsuits:

At least 8 plaintiffs in 2017 filed lawsuits claiming electronic cigarettes exploded in their mouth, with some saying the blast knocked out teeth and caused third-degree burns. Dozens of other claimants allege they were scorched around their legs or groin when vaporizer batteries they were carrying in their pocket caught fire.

There has even been at least one wrongful death lawsuit filed, claiming an exploding e-cig launched shrapnel into New York man's head before he perished in a fire caused by the explosion.

And, according to the U.S. Fire Administration, e-cigarette battery failures present a unique hazard as "no other consumer product places a battery with a known explosion hazard such as this in such close proximity to the human body."

Exploding E-Cig Liability

Most lawsuits involving e-cigarette injuries will be product liability claims, alleging one of three causes for the malfunction:

  1. Defects in Design: A defect causes the e-cigarette to pose an unreasonable risk to consumers, even if it is manufactured and used as intended;
  2. Defects in Manufacturing: A mistake in the production of a well-designed e-cigarette introduces a new danger to consumers; or
  3. Defects in Warnings: A company's failure to properly warn consumers of known risks in using e-cigarettes, if they are inadequate warnings, inaccurate warnings, or no warnings at all.

If you've been injured by an exploding e-cigarette or vape pen battery, contact an experienced injury attorney about your legal options.

Related Resources: