Electronic Cigarette Causes Burn Injury

The number of accidents arising out of the use of E-Cigarettes is on the rise and statistics show that firefighters attend at least one blaze a week caused by the using these.

People have sustained severe burns resulting in permanent scarring; the effects of such injuries are not only physical but also psychological.

An article published by the Mirror http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/man-left-horrific-burns-after-8806111  depicts the injuries sustained by one of our clients, James Vearncombe from Somerset, who has been scarred for life.

The number of e-cigarette users, known as‘vapers’, continues to increase in the UK, with figures rising from 2.6 million last year to 2.8 million this year. It is reported that there has been a 4-fold increase over the 4 last years.

What is causing this rise in its popularity? 

  • Cost - As the price of purchasing cigarettes is on the rise, the comparatively inexpensive cost of e-cigarettes is attractive.

  • Health - The health risks associated with cigarette smoking are well known. E-cigarettes are perceived as carrying a fraction of the risk of cigarettes. SmokeFree NHS reports that ‘Public Health England’s independent review of the latest evidence found that using an e-cigarette (known as ‘vaping’) is around 95% safer than smoking.

  • Fashion - With hundreds of videos appearing on social media, it now seems a fashionable thing to do.

However, as with most new products and trends, little is known about the long term effects of vaping both in relation to an individual’s health but also the safetyof these devices.

Statistics show there are increasing number of shops selling these products and at present it’s estimated that approximately 1700 shops sell e-cigarettes in the UK.  Shop owners can be held responsible where products sold are not of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose. However, Manufacturers also have a duty to ensure the product is not defective; it is fit for purpose and satisfactory for use. Where Manufactures fail to do this, liability will be established.

A few key tips to reduce your risk of an accident:

  • Do not leave these products to charge overnight
  • Ensure you are using the correct battery or charger which came with the product
  • Do not keep the products in your pocket
  • If the product becomes warm stop using it until it has cooled down

If you or a family member has been injured as a result of a using an e-cigarette, it is important to:

  • Attend hospital or seek medical attention
  • Note details of witnesses if possible
  • Take photographs of your injury
  • Keep the product and any packaging
  • Keep any documentary evidence or invoices showing proof of purchase.

If you have been injured by an e-cigarette you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation not only for your injury but also for any financial losses incurred as a result of the accident such as the cost of any plastic/reconstructive surgery and private treatment.

Alice Richards, of NewLaw Solicitors said “Unfortunately, we are seeing more personal injury claims arising from the use of e-cigarettes.  The effects of which are not only physical but also psychological and can be life changing to the victims concerned. More needs to be done to regulate this ever increasing fashionable trend before more people are seriously hurt.”

If you want further information on what to do if you or someone you know has been injured in this way, contact NewLaw Solicitors today and our specialists will be able to assist.


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