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Navy Considers E-Cigarette Ban Amid Safety Worries

man smoking an e-cigarette

The U.S. Navy is considering a ban on electronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigarettes, from all Navy property.

The proposal comes as there is increasing concerns over the dangers of the electronic devices. The Naval Safety Center has recorded 12 incidents of the batteries inside these devices exploding, leading to fires and injuries to the sailors using them.

Navy records 12 e-cig fire events

According to a report at the Navy Times, the 12 incidents were all recorded between October 2015 and May 2016. Seven of those incidents occurred on Navy ships and some resulted in fires that had to be put out using firefighting equipment. Eight of the explosions occurred to e-cigarettes stored in someone’s pocket and led to first and second-degree burns. Another two occurred while the e-cigarettes were in the sailor’s mouths, which caused injuries to the face and teeth.

The Navy is now trying to determine whether keeping e-cigarettes out of submarines, ships and airplanes would increase safety and reduce the potential for property damage.

Currently, the Naval Sea Systems Command has a partial ban on lithium-ion batteries, the same type of batteries that are used in e-cigarettes. The Safety Center is also recommending and extension of the ban to include e-cigarettes, keeping them away from all naval property. When the batteries inside the e-cigarette tube overheat, they can convert the device into a small and very dangerous bomb.

“It is strongly recommended that action be taken to prohibit these devices from use, transport or storage on Navy facilities, submarines, ships, vessels and aircraft,” a memo from the Safety Center reads. “In conjunction with these efforts, it is recommended that the Navy launch a dedicated safety campaign to inform service members about the potential danger of these products.”

Concerns about e-cigs growing

It is not just the Navy that has become concerned about the risks associated with e-cigarettes. Numerous e-cigarette explosions have been reported across the nation, which have caused serious burns, bone fractures and tissue damage. The U.S. Fire Administration found 25 incidents involving e-cigarettes between 2009 and 2014, which were discovered by media reports. However, the administration believes there may have been more injuries and incidents that were not reported during that time.

The report found that 80 percent of the incidents occurred while the battery was being charged, while eight percent occurred while the device was being used. The incidents results in 10 injuries, two of which were considered serious. Both of those occurred when the devices exploded in the users’ mouths.

Currently, there is no regulation of e-cigarettes, which leaves consumers unsure of whether the devices they use are up to the highest safety standards. The devices are also not required to carry any warnings about the possibility of explosions at this time. However, those who are injured by the devices may have legal recourse against the manufacturers that are failing to provide proper warning about potential risks associated with their products.

If you are injured by an e-cigarette, legal help is available. Contact Edelman, Krasin & Jaye to discuss your legal options. To speak with a New York personal injury lawyer free of charge, please call at 1-800-469-7429.

Long Island Drivers Face Memorial Day Weekend DUI Charges

auto accidents - drunk driverTwo men who fled the scene of car accidents over Memorial Day weekend were among a bevy of drivers arrested on DWI charges, reports the East Hampton Star. According to police, Jeffrey J. Fazzinga was driving his Mitsubishi on Montauk Main Street in the early morning hours when he side swiped a Dodge as it was leaving a parking lot. A breath test at police headquarters showed that Fazzinga had been driving while intoxicated. On Saturday, he was released on $250 bail.

Mark A. Schiavoni was also arrested on drunken driving charges over the weekend. He was swerving erratically on Montauk Highway on Napeague at around 5 am, when he was pulled over by police. Schiavoni, who had recently moved to Amagansett, told authorities he thought he only had a few beers before getting in his 2008 Mitsubishi. But after he failed sobriety tests, he conceded that he must have had more. Shortly after his arraignment, Schiavoni had his license suspended after telling an East Hampton Town Justice he was employed as a driver for Hamptons Free Ride.  A breathalyzer test showed a .18 reading, leading police to raise his misdemeanor charge to an aggravated level.

Other Memorial Day weekend DUI arrests

Memorial Day weekend saw a host of other drunk driving arraignments, as Sag Harbor Village police made multiple arrests on misdemeanor D.W.I. charges. One of the arrests was Ingrida Vanzodas, who was caught speeding on Bay Street, and blowing through a stop sign at the intersection of Route 114 and Main Street. The Churchville, Pa. woman was released after posting $500 bail.

In a separate incident, a Sag Harbor man was caught after trying to flee a sobriety checkpoint on the Flanders Road close to Hampton Bays on Saturday night. Pablo G. Carchipulla, age 31, was charged with D.W.I. after failing roadside sobriety tests, and was also charged with driving without a license – a felony crime. When authorities began to impound the suspect’s vehicle, his passenger, Geovany Plaza, suddenly got behind the wheel and attempted to flee. Police say the 27-year-old drove over medians without headlights onto Sunrise Highway, with law officers in hot pursuit.

Plaza was also found to be intoxicated at the time, and because he had a previous drunk driving conviction, his DWI charge is now at the felony level. Both suspects were arraigned in Southampton Town Justice Court and posted bail.

Fortunately, none of the incidents resulted in serious injury or death, which is often the case when motorists drink and drive.

Legal recourse for drunk driving victims

Statistics show that Suffolk County has one of the highest rates of drunk driving fatalities in New York State, just ahead of Queens County, Nassau County and Kings County. Here at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, we believe that drunk drivers should be held liable for the pain and suffering their poor decisions and actions cause.

We help victims on Long Island receive legal compensation for their injuries, or the tragic loss of a loved one. Our highly credentialed car accident lawyers work diligently to maximize the payout our clients secure for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other losses.

Schedule a free case review with our attorneys by calling 1-800-469-7429.

Lowe’s Slip and Fall Case Results in $16.4M Jury Award

New York car accident lawyer speaking to juryJurors in a Las Vegas courtroom recently handed down a multi-million dollar verdict in favor of the plaintiff in a slip and fall case. Lowe’s Home Centers, LLC was ordered to pay Kelly Hendrickson $16.4 million for her injuries. The decision came following an 11-day trial that highlighted the severity of Hendrickson’s injuries and the alleged problems associated with the defendants’ safety policies.

It took the jury just six hours of deliberations to agree on the slip and fall verdict. $1.9 million of the award is for the plaintiff’s medical expenses and the rest is for her pain and suffering.

Plaintiff falls on wet concrete, fractures skull

The case stemmed from a 2013 incident at a Lowe’s franchise in Las Vegas. The then-38-year-old mother of three stopped by the garden center, where she spent some time looking at palm trees. She even snapped a few pictures and sent them to her husband. At that point, Hendrickson fell on wet concrete and struck her head. During the trial, Hendrickson testified that the last thing she remembered was “looking up at the palm trees” before she lost consciousness. When she awoke, Hendrickson had excruciating pain in her head. “My head was just killing me. It was the worst pain I’ve ever felt, and I just, was so confused.”

Upon awakening, Hendrickson says that she began yelling for help, but that no one could hear her. “I just remember thinking, ‘Am I going to die?’ I guess I just realized at that moment that I hit my head, on the concrete, and what that could do to a person. It just, it scared me to death.” Hendrickson further testified that she began to panic thinking about what might happen to her family if she died there on the concrete.

When Hendrickson finally did receive medical attention, it was determined that she had fractured her skull. Among her other permanent injuries, she has lost her senses of smell and taste.

History of falls at Lowe’s stores

During the trial, Hendrickson’s counsel argued that Lowe’s was negligent in failing to adequately warn her of the wet concrete. Although a store employee had placed a caution cone in the area, Hendrickson claimed that it was obstructed from view.

The plaintiff’s counsel further argued that Lowe’s allegedly has a poor track record of customer safety, given that there have been at least 23 falls among just 13 area stores over the past five years.

Are you entitled to seek compensation?

You shouldn’t be forced to pay for medical expenses that were the result of someone else’s negligence. You might also be entitled to request damages for your pain and suffering, and perhaps punitive damages, depending on the circumstances.

Your first step is to contact a qualified slip and fall lawyer at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye. We are a personal injury law firm serving Long Island and the surrounding areas. During your case review, we’ll examine the incident and your losses, and explain your options. These might include filing a premises liability lawsuit against the retail establishment where you sustained your injuries. Not all lawsuits are resolved through a trial; some are resolved via settlement talks.

Call Edelman, Krasin & Jaye today at 1.800.469.7429 to schedule your free case review.

Allen Rosner Selected as Rising Star by Super Lawyers

AllenJRosnerEdelman, Krasin & Jaye is proud to announce that Allen Rosner has been selected as a 2015-2016 Rising Star by Super Lawyers magazine. This industry rating process recognizes superb young attorneys across 70 practice areas who are either under 40 years old or have been in practice for under 10 years. The honor is only bestowed on no more than 2.5% of the lawyers in a state, who are selected based upon first-hand observation by their colleagues and their resumes of professional achievements.

To be designated a Super Lawyer or Rising Star, an attorney must go through a multi-phase selection process. First, he or she must stand out to peers or the Super Lawyers research department as someone who can provide the public with outstanding service. The researchers next evaluate candidates on 12 indicators of recognition and achievement including scholarly writings, law firm experience, bar association and other professional activities, and community service. Candidates are then ranked by a “blue ribbon” panel from within their practice areas. The lawyers with the highest rankings in each practice area are then compared to lawyers practicing in firms of similar sizes and the top lawyers are honored.

Mr. Rosner joins the firm’s Paul B. Edelman, who was also recognized by Super Lawyers.

Rosner dedicated to serving his clients

Mr. Allen Rosner is a trial attorney who upholds the professional values promoted by Super Lawyers. He represents victims in personal injury claims that include medical malpractice, auto accidents, lead poisoning, premises liability, and other tort-or negligence-based lawsuits. He prides himself on maintaining close communication with each client, tuning into his or her needs to put a personal touch on their case. Mr. Rosner also uses his accounting background to represent clients in commercial claims, including breach of contract actions.

Whether it means trying a case or settling beforehand, Mr. Rosner puts each client’s needs at the forefront. He always reaches for maximum compensation to put the client on their best footing.

As part of his commitment to the community, Mr. Rosner has participated in the Cardozo Law School Mentoring Program as well as the Executive Board of the Torts, Insurance and Compensation Law Section of the New York State Bar. He is also a member of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association and the New York State Bar Association.

Mr. Rosner graduated cum laude from St. John’s University School of Law, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the New York Litigator Law Journal. He also has an Accounting degree from the University of Rhode Island, where he graduated summa cum laude.

About Edelman Krasin & Jaye

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye is a New York personal injury firm with over fifty years of experience representing victims throughout the state. With offices in Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn and Long Island, Edelman Krasin & Jaye protects the rights of New Yorkers in personal injury lawsuits, class actions, class actions, labor law disputes, and pharmaceutical mass torts.

Vape Pen Explodes, Causing Third Degree Burns

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Recent reports show that carrying around an e-cig can be more dangerous than lighting a real cigarette. A Phoenix man suffered second and third degree burns after his vape pen suddenly exploded in his pocket. Twenty-two year old Otis Stovall told Fox News he was unloading a truck at his work when the incident happened. He’s now publicly speaking out against e-cigarettes, a product which he claims has left him with deep burns down his leg. Stovall says that like many people trying to quit lighting up, he turned to vaping instead. He had no idea that it might cost him serious pain and weeks of recovery.

“I just looked down and saw that pieces of my skin were missing,” he told reporters after being treated at the Arizona Burn Center. After hearing an explosion, he looked down and saw “… flames spurting out of my pocket so I just immediately started hitting it but I didn’t know what was happening.”

The vaporizer had spontaneously exploded, taking with it large chunks of Stovall’s skin. Authorities at the Burn Center confirmed that this is the second e-cig explosion injury they have treated this year.

E-cig blows up, leaving victim with severe burns

Stovall’s mother cautioned about the dangers of vaping, given the life-altering injuries her son has suffered. The thermal injury was so great that Stovall must have skin grafting surgery – an operation that entails a lengthy recovery of several weeks or months. The 22-year old victim warns others to steer clear of vaporizers, saying, “If you’re going to quit smoking cigarettes, just quit smoking cigarettes. Don’t go to anything else.”

Vape explosions lead to litigation

There have been scores of other cases of e-cigs exploding in other parts of the country. The problem in many of these accidents is the lithium-ion battery, which can overheat and explode if they get too much voltage.

In 2013, Jennifer Ries’ vaporizer blew up while plugged in her car’s charger. Flames burst out of the device, leaving her with second degree burns on her hand, leg and buttocks. Her injuries would have been worse had her husband not poured ice coffee on her leg to douse the flames. The accident completely transformed her life, leaving her with physical and emotional scars.

Ries filed a claim against the e-cig distributor and wholesaler, in addition to the store where she purchased the unit in California. Her product liability lawsuit charged that the manufacturer and wholesaler distributed a product without sufficient warnings about known hazards. A Superior Court jury agreed with her allegations and awarded her $1.9 million in damages.

Content with her verdict, Ries says that she hopes her lawsuit and award will bring more attention to the very real dangers of e-cigs, which need more government regulation.

Filing an e-cig injury lawsuit

Vaporizers have been available for purchase in the United States since 2007, and have been linked to more than 50 injury reports, according to FDA data. Individuals who have suffered burns or other types of harm from an e-cigarette malfunction may be entitled to substantial compensation that accounts for all medical bills, lost income, emotional suffering and diminished capacity to earn.

To learn more about your options for legal recourse, we invite you to contact the personal injury attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye for a free case review. You can reach our offices, anytime night or day by dialing 800-469-7429.

Safety Rules Not Followed in Fatal Amtrak Crash in Chester

RR crossing freight trainAn Amtrak crash that killed two and injured 30 appears to be the result of failure to follow basic safety rules. An investigation has revealed both Amtrak’s internal rules and federal rules were broken by Amtrak employees on April 3, the day of the fatal event.

Two employees who had been working on the track in Chester, Pennsylvania, died after they were hit by an Amtrak train traveling on the same track.

The crash occurred around 8:00 Sunday morning, near Booth Street in Chester. Two workers were on the tracks with a backhoe when the train, traveling from New York to Savannah, Georgia, struck them. According to investigators, concerns focused on how the personnel working on the tracks were not following proper safety precautions. Philly.com reported that sources with knowledge of the crash said a communication lapse between work shifts may have contributed to the crash.

Amtrak train victims identified

The two workers, veterans of Amtrak, were identified as Joseph Carter, 61, of Wilmington, Delaware, and Peter John Adamovich, 59, of Lincoln University, Pennsylvania. Carter was identified in an autopsy report as the backhoe operator and Adamovich was his supervisor. Thirty of the 341 passengers on the train were also taken to nearby hospitals with what was described as “non-life threatening injuries.”

Philly.com reports that there are “multiple federal and agency rules and regulations” created to prevent incidences of trains traveling on the same tracks where workers are performing maintenance or repairs. However, the Federal Railroad Administration gave the first official confirmation that those rules and regulations were not properly followed in this particular crash. The president and CEO of Amtrak, Joseph Boardman, did not dispute the directive given by the FRA and stated the company would create a new internal compliance program to ensure these breaches are not repeated.

In the meantime, the FRA ordered Amtrak to require all of the maintenance workers and supervisors to review safety regulations that applied directly to their jobs. Amtrak must also review safety rules involving communication between rail workers and dispatchers. Finally, the company was instructed to perform similar reviews with all “safety sensitive” employees.

Multiple accidents within 12 hours

While train and railroad crossing accidents are relatively rare, three such accidents occurred within about 12 hours of each other on April 3. CNN reported that in addition to the Chester crash, a train struck an individual in Buck County, Pennsylvania, and another train struck a vehicle at an intersection in Somonauk, Illinois. This accident was also less than a year after another fatal train accident in Pennsylvania that took the lives of eight.

If you or someone you love is injured in a train accident, compensation may be available to help you pay for medical bills and make up for lost wages while you recover from the injuries. However, determining liability can be a complex issue as there could be many factors that contributed to the accident. Experienced legal representation is essential to ensuring your rights are protected.

Don’t try to navigate the complicated legal process alone. Contact Edelman, Krasin and Jaye at 1-800-469-7429 for a free case review with Long Island personal injury attorneys who can answer your questions.

OSHA Evaluates Impact of New 2015 Injury Reporting Program

construction-accidentThe Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has released an evaluation of the impact that their 2015 severe injury reporting guideline has had on workplace safety. The newest requirement, that severe injury be reported to the administration within 24 hours, took effect on January 1, 2015, and seems to have had a positive impact on accident prevention.

The analysis of the new requirement’s effectiveness notes that prior to 2015, the administration often lacked sufficient data about accidents in the workplace to respond effectively. For instance, only after a workplace fatality would be reported would it become clear that an extensive history of serious accidents led up to the death of a worker.

Now employers are required to report any serious injuries, including amputations, hospitalizations, or loss of an eye within 24 hours. The new requirement supplements existing laws mandating that workplace fatalities be reported within eight hours.

The OSHA report details how the reporting of serious injuries allows for cooperation between the administration and the employee to prevent further injury or death, effectively reducing both workplace calamities.

New data helps to prevent workplace injuries

The data reported from more than 10,000 injuries last year provides the administration with tools to help understand where and when injuries occur and to prevent further thousands of injuries from taking place, according to the OSHA report. The two specific goals of the program were to monitor injuries in the workplace so as to target compliance and enforcement efforts more effectively, and to work with employers to prevent similar accidents from occurring.

Many of the kinds of hazards that lead to injuries reported are “well-understood and easily prevented,” according to OSHA’s evaluation. The OSHA program encourages employers to evaluate their own areas of safety weakness and to implement effective means of accident prevention.

The data came only from states with federally administered OSHA involvement. Even so, the number of injuries reported was significant: 7,636 hospitalizations and 2,644 amputations. 26% of hospitalizations and 57% of amputations were reported from manufacturing settings. The second most dangerous area was construction, where 19% of hospitalizations and 10% of amputations were reported.

Options for those injured on the job

For employees who have been injured on the job, worker’s compensation may be available to help with expenses incurred due to the injury. Workman’s comp is not related to whether a company is liable for the injury that occurred and is rewarded regardless of “fault.” However, such compensation is rarely sufficient to cover all of the losses that a worker encounters, including medical bills, long-term rehabilitation costs, loss of income, and loss of earning potential. And it will frequently be sufficient to help support a family of a worker who loses his life.

In cases where injuries occur due to negligence, it may not be possible to sue an employer directly where workman’s comp is available. However, it may be possible to bring a personal injury lawsuit against subcontractors employed by a company who are responsible for training or design issues, for other companies responsible for manufacturing, maintaining, or repairing equipment, or for other parties who may bear some responsibility for an on-the-job injury or fatality.

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye offer seasoned legal advice to individuals who have been injured on the job, whether on a construction site or other place of employment. Discuss your case with a construction accident lawyer free of charge by calling 1-800-469-7429.

GHSA Releases 2015 Data on Pedestrian Fatalities

pedestrain-accidentThe Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) has released its data on pedestrian traffic fatalities from 2015. The Association notes an overall increase in deaths, though a state by state analysis finds increases in some settings and decreases in others. They have also reported on various attempts to mitigate the problem through separation, visibility, and vehicle speed reduction.

The GHSA reports a 10% increase in pedestrian fatalities compared to the previous year, building on the 19% increase from 2009 to 2014. This means that the largest percentage of traffic fatalities were reported last year compared to all of the past 25 years. Additionally, pedestrian deaths as a percentage of all traffic fatalities has increased from 11% in 2005-2007 to 15% in 2014. In 2015, that number may have risen to 15%, marking the first time in 25 years that rates of pedestrian deaths are so comparatively high.

Twenty-six states saw increases in pedestrian fatalities (compared to 21 with decreases). New York’s rate of pedestrian fatalities was 1.33 per 100k population. Together with California, Florida, and Texas, New York accounted for 42 percent of all pedestrian deaths in the country.

Strategies to reduce pedestrian traffic fatalities

The GHSA also outlined several strategies to reduced pedestrian traffic fatalities, including three “evidence-based strategies” implemented in locations throughout the US: separating pedestrians from motor vehicles, making pedestrians more visible, and reducing vehicle speed.

The first category includes constructing refuge islands, constructing sidewalks and pedestrian overpasses or underpasses, optimized traffic signal timing, and new traffic signals. The second category includes better lighting, more visible crosswalks, and rectangular rapid-flashing beacons (RRFBs) added to pedestrian crossing signs. And the third category includes areas in the roadway designated for cyclists, for turning, or for other specific uses, roundabouts, speed humps and curb extensions, and additional speed enforcement measures.

The state of New York will be introducing its PSP (pedestrian safety plan) later in 2016. The plan will include education efforts, engineering upgrades, and law enforcement strategies designed to increase pedestrian safety. There have also been particular areas in the state that have received special attention. For instance, the Village of Saugerties saw a recent increase in pedestrian injuries and fatalities. Authorities worked to upgrade traffic signals and other amenities to combat the problem; they also introduced safety patrols and other measures to help to keep pedestrians safe.

Legal rights following a pedestrian knock down

Pedestrian accident victims have a legal right to seek compensation from the party that hit them if a driver displayed such reckless behaviors as speeding through a crosswalk or driving while distracted. Pedestrians should be able to cross the street safety, especially in designated crosswalks. An investigation can determine whether a motorist was at fault by failing to yield to a pedestrian in a way that resulted in an injury or fatality. Accident victims or their families can file a lawsuit to recover medical or rehabilitation expenses, lost wages or earning potential, wrongful death expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages.

If you’ve been harmed because of the negligent or reckless behavior of a driver, please contact the attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye to discuss your options for filing a car accident lawsuit. Call today at 1-800-469-7429 to set up a free case review.

Jury Awards $72 Million in Talcum Powder Lawsuit

talcumA jury has awarded the family of a woman $72 million after determining use of talcum powder products led to her diagnosis of ovarian cancer and subsequent death. The decision was the first to award damages to someone claiming to have been injured from talcum powder. With numerous talcum powder lawsuits involving similar allegations now pending across the country, many have been watching with interest to see how this case would be decided.

Jacqueline Fox used Johnson & Johnson talcum powder products for more than 35 years, according to this complaint. Three years ago, Fox was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, which she asserted was directly linked to her talcum powder use. She, along with many other women, filed lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson, alleging the pharmaceutical giant failed to provide women with proper warning about the risks associated with their products.

Plaintiff dies before case is completed

Fox died in October 2015 at the age of 62, before her case was completed. Her son, Marvin Salter, took over Fox’s claim after her death. In February, a jury determined that Johnson & Johnson was liable for fraud, negligence and conspiracy in Fox’s case, awarding the family of the deceased $72 million after four hours of deliberations. Actual damages consisted of $10 million of the total, while the other $62 million was awarded in punitive damages.

One of the attorney’s for Fox’s family stated that Johnson & Johnson knew back in the 1980s the risks associated with their talcum powder products. However, the attorney stated that the company resorted to “lying to the public and lying to the regulatory agencies.”

A spokesperson for Johnson & Johnson disagreed with the verdict, telling Reuters the safety of their products is backed up by “decades of scientific evidence.” However, a recent study indicates the safety of products containing talcum powder could indeed be overstated.

New talc study shows cancer danger

Researchers at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston interviewed more than 4,000 women about their talcum powder use in this new study that was recently published in the journal Epidemiology. Around half of the women had received ovarian cancer diagnoses and the other half had not. They discovered that regular use of talcum powder, either directly on the genitals or on sanitary napkins, increased the risk of ovarian cancer by one-third.

Ovarian cancer is the eighth most common cancer among women in the U.S. today, affecting as many as one in every 70 women. One of the greatest dangers of this disease is that it often presents with few if any noticeable symptoms. This means that by the time a woman realizes she has ovarian cancer, the disease may be quite advanced and much more difficult to treat effectively.

Additional talcum powder studies support risk factor

The link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer is not new. A 1982 study conducted by Dr. Daniel Cramer showed a statistical link between talcum powder use and a heightened risk of ovarian cancer. Since that time, around 20 epidemiological studies have also confirmed that link, according to a report at Salon last year. Nevertheless, companies like Johnson & Johnson continue to market their talc products as safe and effective hygiene items.

Currently, Johnson & Johnson is facing around 1,200 lawsuits filed by women with similar allegations to Fox’s. Time will tell whether this court decision or the most recent study will impact the decisions in those cases as well.

If you have been injured by talcum powder use, the national product liability attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye can help. Contact us today at 1-800-469-7429 for a free case review and to discuss your legal options.

Exploding E-Cigarettes, Burns and Injuries Make Headlines

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Reports of electronic cigarettes spontaneously exploding, causing disfiguring injuries and third degree burns have prompted serious concerns about the safety of these tobacco alternatives. Several people from around the country have narrowly escaped death after their e-cig suddenly burst into flames – catching objects, clothing and skin on fire.

This ill-fated scenario happened to Kentucky resident Josh Hamilton, who is currently recovering from severe burns to his leg after an e-cigarette battery exploded in his pocket, shooting hot flames through his clothes. After getting treatment at a local hospital, Hamilton posted gruesome pictures of his burned flesh on Facebook, captioning the pics “These are actually all 2nd degree burns so hopefully won’t have to have surgery or skin graphs. But it’s too soon to tell I think.”

Considering that some 9 million Americans have switched to vaping as a safer alternative to cigarettes and make use of the tobacco-free devices, the potential scope for e-cigarette injury is alarming.

E-cig explodes, burns car and woman

Other stories of e-cigarette explosions have poured in to media outlets around the country. Just last week, an Orlando, Florida woman was turning on her e-cig when it burst into flames.  The explosion happened when Cassandra Koziol was inside her rental car. Stunned and in pain, she ran to a friend’s place to call the police, and by the time she returned to the vehicle it was completely engulfed in flames.

“I’ll never use a (e-cigarette) again… I lost my car, I lost my teeth, (and) I lost my mod. I’m in pain,” she told UberGizmo in an interview. A photo of Koziol  shows a serious burn near her collarbone and a closed-mouth grimace.

The burns, broken teeth and debilitating injuries aren’t just happening in the United States. Another e-cig victim in Germany was only 16 when the life-altering event happened. According to the teen’s father, the boy was about to vape in his vehicle when the e-cig caught his face on fire, causing him to lose his two front teeth. If the teen had not been wearing glasses at the time, it is likely he would have suffered permanent vision damage.

The e-cig in question was manufactured in China and marketed as the “Wotofo Phantom,” and the cause of the explosion remains under investigation.

22 e cig explosions reported since 2008

Tom Kiklas of the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association told CNN that at least 22 e-cig explosions have been reported since 2008, when the devices were first launched. Kiklas says the danger doesn’t necessarily lie in the electronic cigarette itself, but in the lithium battery. Consumers may use the wrong type of chargers with the batteries, which can cause a problem.

Kiklas cautions that e-cigs should never be kept in clothing pockets as metal coins can short-circuit the lithium battery if they make contact.

No e-cig warnings yet, but label changes may come soon

The Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association has suggested the addition of new language on device packaging that alerts consumers about the hazards of modifying e-cigarettes with power cords or chargers that are not compatible, as doing so may result in serious or fatal injury. Until then, millions of e-cig users remain at risk for catastrophic harm.

If you have suffered burns or any type of injury due to an exploding e-cigarette or vaporizer, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. These devices are largely unregulated in the U.S. and manufacturers may be held liable in the event they were negligent in the production or labeling of their products.

Product liability attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are only a phone call away. Contact us today for a free consultation and more information about your rights under the law.