E-Cigarette Accidents on the Rise

18918915_mE-cigarettes may seem like the perfect antidote to smoking bans, but you might want to think twice before bringing a device into your home. The liquid in the cartridges can cause poisoning, posing the greatest risk to children and pets. The devices themselves can malfunction and overheat while charging, causing fires. The batteries can explode and cause damage to you or your property.

Nicotine Poisoning

Nicotine is a powerful and deadly poison. Traditional cigarettes generally do not pose a nicotine poisoning threat, although toddlers have been poisoned by sucking on cigarette butts. E-cigarettes contain nicotine in liquid form, making it very easy for children and pets to ingest a high dose, or even absorb a toxic dose through their skin.

E-cigarettes come in all kinds of flavors which are enticing to children, such as watermelon and bubble gum, so if a child gets a whiff or a taste, they will likely be inclined to keep ingesting the liquid.

Signs of nicotine poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Flushing
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Changes in heart rate
  • Changes in blood pressure

Explosions and Fires

Even if you don’t have children or pets, there is another very frightening concern with e-cigarettes. They can malfunction with disastrous results. Sometimes they overheat and cause fires, and sometimes the batteries actually explode.

We’ve seen this type of thing in the past with cellphones and other electronic devices, especially those which rely on rechargeable batteries. The stories of exploding e-cigarettes, while supposedly rare, are particularly scary. A Florida man lost his front teeth and part of his tongue when his e-cigarette exploded in his mouth, a three-year-old boy suffered first and second degree burns when his mom’s e-cigarette exploded in their car, setting his car seat on fire, and a Georgia woman reported watching her charging e-cigarette explode, shooting four foot flames across her living room.