Coming on the heels of the story about the Florida man whose e-cig exploded in his face is a similar scenario of events involving a man in Colorado. The incident happened shortly before that of the Florida case and is currently making its way through the Colorado courts. Phillip Hahn, of Denver, Colorado, purchased a Prodigy V3.1 kit online from a company called Pure Smoker. Despite warnings published on the company’s website regarding the use of non-protected batteries, Hahn tried to save a few bucks by purchasing regular batteries from his local RadioShack…with disastrous consequences.
While using the modified Prodigy V3.1, the stacked batteries inside suddenly exploded; causing extreme damage to Hahn’s face, mouth and eyes. Theresa Hahn, Hahn’s wife, called 911 and Hahn was ambulanced to the hospital, where he remained for eight days. The Hahns are now pursuing legal action against Pure Smoker; seeking damages for everything from “defective design and manufacture” to “negligent infliction of emotional distress”. There may be merit to the Hahns’ claim that the device was defective; however, the fact that Hahn did not follow the guidelines set forth by Pure Smoker makes a ruling in his favor unlikely.
Due to the unwillingness on the part of the FDA to consider modified risk regulation for electronic cigarettes, each manufacturer is solely tasked with the responsibility of providing safe, reliable products. It is up to the consumer to do their due diligence before selecting the brand in whose hands they are willing to put their safety. These days, there are few brands which feature devices that hold stacked batteries; the propensity for these products to explode is much higher than non-stacked models. Stacked or not, consumers who modify a device do so at their own risk.
Adults don’t generally like to follow directions. We think that we know better and can find a way to do something more cheaply or quickly than directed. Unfortunately for Phillip Hahn and the gentlemen who met a similar end in Florida, this DIY attitude had dire consequences. It’s hoped that this incident will be the last of its kind; however, until people realize the danger associated with modifying their e-cigs, this situation is bound to repeat itself.
Tags: electronic cigarettes