E-cigarettes and vapes – wrongly thought to be safer than regular cigarettes and smoke – have been all the rage lately. The popularity of these electronic devices, which, despite popular belief, are not a healthier alternative to cigarettes, has been growing in the United States and all across the world in the past few years.
Reports of people getting injured – and even dying – as a result of using e-cigarettes and vape pens have kept mounting. In fact, earlier this week, a 38-year-old man in Florida died after his vape pen exploded and sent two pieces of shrapnel into his cranium, according to Gizmodo.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have launched their latest attack on e-cigarettes, and particularly targeting product labeling to prevent injuries and fatalities among young children. E-cigarette companies are being urged to stop packaging and advertising e-liquids in ways that attract children.
Let’s admit it: some of those tobacco and nicotine products do look like snacks for children, which is major a major misbranding issue that poses a huge threat to the safety of young children.
Our California defective product attorney at the Mancini & Associates explains that using labels that look like children’s food and drink products when packaging, advertising, and selling tobacco and nicotine products is a violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
The FTC also argues in its letter warning e-cigarette companies about the unlawful labeling of their products that unfair and deceptive marketing techniques are prohibited by California law.
The fact that e-liquids have a similar scent to child-friendly foods and snacks such as candies, cookies, and juices makes it even more dangerous, says our product liability attorney in California. While it is doubtful that stores selling these nicotine and tobacco products would sell them to underage children, there is a high risk of young children consuming these products if somebody else bought it and it is within a child’s reach at home (if their parents, siblings or others bought it).
Consuming nicotine and tobacco products, which are packaged to resemble kid-friendly food and drink products, poses major health risks for children. Consuming e-liquids by children can be very dangerous as kids have a greater risk of harm from consuming these products, even in a very small dosage.
These e-liquids containing tobacco and/or nicotine can be so toxic for children that the consumption of these products can even result in death. According to the 2017 analysis by the National Poison Data System, nearly 8,300 children under 6 were exposed to cigarette and liquid nicotine between January 2012 and April 2017.
But injuries and death from e-cigarettes and vapes can occur not only due to unlawful labeling and misbranding, but also because of the defective batteries inside. E-cigarette batteries have long been a major concern. In fact, there were nearly 200 incidents of fires and explosions caused by e-cigarette batteries between 2009 and 2016.
If you have been injured while using a faulty e-cigarette or any other defective product, do not hesitate to speak to our California product liability attorney at Mancini & Associates. Call our offices at 818-783-5757 or complete this contact form to get a free consultation.