E-cigarettes have long posed issues for the public. One of the most significant problems has been the risk of the lithium batteries exploding. While this has been a known defect for some time, there are still explosions happening after several years of concerns.
In February, a man was killed when an e-cigarette blew up in his face. The explosion lacerated a major artery in his neck, which led to his death. Another man suffered an e-cigarette burn and was left disfigured when the explosion from his e-cigarette blew away part of his face as well as breaking several of his teeth.
E-cigarettes have been on the market since approximately 2007, and since that time, there have been many explosions that have maimed and killed. There are other devices that could potentially explode due to the lithium batteries they use, but the e-cigarettes are special. They’re used close to the face, and that means a higher risk of injuries and death if an explosion does occur.
Why are lithium batteries so dangerous?
In most circumstances, they’re relatively safe. However, they can go through a failure best known as “thermal runway.” During thermal runway, the battery reaches temperatures of around 1,000 degrees. Such high temperatures, especially in a smaller, enclosed space, lead to explosions.
While this might not be as much of a problem when the explosion occurs with a laptop or phones, the fact that the e-cigarette is often in your mouth is concerning. An explosion at that distance from the body makes it extremely dangerous.
Another reason that e-cigarettes explode could come down to the design. With a pipe-like shape, the explosion can make the battery or the container itself propel like a rocket, which can mean hot shrapnel hitting the victim in the face, hands or other sensitive areas.
There have been reports suggesting not to use lithium batteries in e-cigarettes, so that the likelihood of a failing battery would be decreased. The number of accidents and explosions that happen are low, though, with only around 195 incidents between 2009 and 2016. It’s vital to point out that 133 people were hurt, with 38 suffering severe injuries and at least two people being killed.
Lithium batteries can be dangerous in e-cigarettes, and if yours explodes, you could suffer serious burns and other injuries. Seek medical care if you’re involved in an explosion, and make sure you reach out to your attorney for assistance making a claim in Michigan.