Many of us have our concerns about the dangers of e-cigarettes. Not this type of danger, though. A former CNBC producer was killed by an exploding e-cigarette. An autopsy revealed that the e-cigarette exploded and lodged in his skull.
The producer was Tallmadge Wakeman D'Elia. He died on Cinco de Mayo in St. Petersburg, Florida when his vape pen started a fire in his bedroom. The autopsy revealed that not only did the e-cigarette start a fire, but it also created a "projectile wound" in the skull of D'Elia.
This vape pen was made in the Philippines. This particular device is unregulated and is not recommended for beginners. There is still no evidence as to what made the pen explode.
According to FEMA, who keeps track of statistics on e-cigareetes, the death of D'Elia is the first United States death caused by a vape pen.
Per ABC News:
The medical examiner says the vape was a Smok-E Mountain Mech Works, a type of unregulated mechanical mod e-cigarette, which in an online description says "does not come with safety features."
ABC Action News found an online warning explaining that the vape is not meant for beginners.
“I just don’t think they’re safe enough," explained Gary Wilder, the owner of Lizard Juice.
Wilder says he, and many other local store owners, won’t sell the “unregulated” e-cigarettes. Instead they turn to vapes with a computer chip inside, which keeps the device from overheating.
“Any other e-cig that has a computer chip in it prevents that from happening,” Wilder added.
According to a recent FEMA report, vape pen explosions are not common, but when they do happen, the shape of the devices make them behave like “flaming rockets.”
Wilder suggests using rubber casings over any extra batteries and re-wrapping any batteries that seem to be worn down.
A rep from the company who created the device said that their devices do not explode and it was most likely caused by an atomizer. This is the part the person puts into their mouth when vaping.