Jeremy McDow of DeKalb County, Georgia, told Channel 2 Action News that he first started using e-cigarettes to quit smoking regular tobacco cigarettes. According to a news report in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the man’s e-cigarette exploded in his pocket, causing him third-degree burns. The incident occurred in July. The lithium-ion battery in the e-cigarette blew up when the man was at work. McDow said he heard three bangs like a hand grenade. The batteries were white hot and melted the floor tile, he said.
The severe burn injuries turned McDow’s household upside down, he said. The burns on his hand and left leg kept him in the Grady Burn Center for two weeks and he still faces nine months of recovery. He has also said he plans to sue the battery manufacturer. McDow also told Channel 2 that money isn’t motivating his lawsuit. He wants to see warnings on the batteries and the devices into which they go. “A battery is not worth a human life,” McDow says.
The Danger of Lithium Ion Batteries
E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that simulate tobacco smoking by producing a heated vapor, which resembles smoke. These devices have become a popular alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes. There is also a growing number of people who have never been smokers who enjoy e-cigarettes. These devices are powered by lithium-ion batteries, which also help power other commonly-used devices such as laptops and cell phones.
However, while the batteries in those devices are subject to quality control, cheaply manufactured lithium-ion batteries find their way into e-cigarettes making them extremely dangerous. There have been numerous incidents across the country where individuals have suffered severe burn injuries as a result of e-cigarettes exploding and catching fire.
Compensation for Injured Victims
Injured victims of e-cigarette explosions and burn injuries can seek compensation for their losses by filing a product liability claim against the product manufacturer, distributor or even retailer. Victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitative therapy, permanent injuries, scarring and disfigurement and pain and suffering. As McDow says, the important thing is to make sure that the manufacturers of these dangerous and defective products are held accountable for their negligence. An experienced e-cig injury lawyer can help injured victims and their families better understand their legal rights and options.