While concerns about health effects and youth targeted marketing have the attorneys general of 37 states asking the FDA to regulate e cigarettes much like the agency regulates the sale of tobacco, there are numerous reports of the devices “exploding” or catching fire, which can be significantly more dangerous than simply inhaling nicotine.

For example, there was the Florida man who had an e cig explode in his mouth last year, resulting in a trip to the hospital to treat burns to his face.

At the time, a rep for industry group the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association told the AP that the organization had not heard of any incidents involving explosions or fires.

But in just the last few months, there have been numerous reports of fires caused by e cigs going “kapow.”

In September, an Atlanta woman says her new e cigarette was charging when it exploded and shot flames several feet across her living room.

A more high profile incident occurred a few weeks later in Utah, when a young child was burned after an exploding e cigarette set fire to the youngster’s car seat.

The Provo Fire Marshall said at the time the fire was due to a “catastrophic failure of the device,” and that this was the second such explosion he knew of in the city, but luckily only the first to result in an injury.

And just this week, a Minnesota man says his e cig “turned into a firework” while plugged into his computer for charging.

“This is something that is supposed to be safe and is not,” he told MyFox 9 in Minneapolis.

The owner of an e cig shop in the area told the station that “There’s a lot of inferior products out there,” and that he hears of similar incidents a few times a week.

Given its previous claims that it didn’t know of explosions and fires related to e cigarettes, we went back to TVECA to see what, if anything, the industry was doing to minimize the odds of future incidents.

“We at the TVECA push for regulation that requires companies to purchase products with GMP (good manufacturing practices) standards,” a rep for the organization tells Consumerist. “We request that these companies also carry liability insurance on all products sold. We work diligently with government agencies to implement these rules so that we can create a responsible and stable industry.”

The rep did attempt to downplay the prevalence of the issue, pointing to the millions of e cigs sold and used without incident, though he did admit that even the few incidents that have occurred are not acceptable.

It seems like most e cig explosions occur when the the device is being charged. As some remarked in response to this Reddit thread about a fiery faux smoke, the devices will sometimes continue to attempt to charge the battery even after it is already fully charged. This can happen either because the cigarette doesn’t have a built in safeguard to prevent this and/or because the person charging the device is using a charger that didn’t come with it.

So even though most of us have gotten used to leaving phones and other rechargeable devices plugged in long after they have been fully charged, e cig users should be careful and unplug their devices from the charger when it is recharged. Consumers should also pressure the manufacturers and regulators of these devices to enact stricter quality control standards and to employ technology that will prevent e cigarettes from continuing to charge already full batteries.

The cigarette industry: running out of puff

El dorado discount cigarettes – santa fe, nm

  • Asia
  • China
  • Europe
  • United Kingdom
  • Smoking and tobacco

Were that to happen America s three big tobacco firms, Altria, Reynolds and Lorillard, could be snuffed out, too. Public health officials plot the same fate for multinationals that supply other markets. The hit list includes Philip Morris International (PMI), which along with Altria makes Marlboro, the top selling global brand Japan Tobacco and British American Tobacco and Imperial Tobacco of Britain.

They are a hardy bunch, unlikely to be spooked. But the methods they have used to withstand a half century of battering by regulators may be losing potency. In the rich world, where the economy is sluggish, smokers are trading down to cheaper puffs. The regulatory climate in developing countries is becoming more hostile. New technologies such as e cigarettes promise to deliver nicotine less riskily. Big tobacco firms may master them, but it would be a radical shift, akin to converting the car industry from internal combustion engines to battery power. David Adelman of Morgan Stanley, an investment bank, does not see anything that s upending the conventional tobacco business model. But the model needs tweaking.

Some reasons for Mr Adelman s confidence are sound. Advertising bans and the industry s pariah status deter would be competitors. When cigarette makers raise prices, smokers cough up. Global consumption keeps rising, thanks largely to population growth in poorer countries. The cigarette giants pamper investors with big dividends and share buy backs they have flocked to tobacco shares (see chart).

But the going is getting tougher. This month health officials in China, home to more smokers than any other country, called for a ban on smoking in public places. That would mainly affect state owned China Tobacco, which has a near monopoly. But multinationals shares wobbled anyway the proposed crackdown could portend tighter regulation elsewhere. Britain s government, after some wavering, may now go ahead and copy Australia s requirement for cigarettes to be sold in ugly, scary plain packs .

Such pleasure pinching regulation strikes at one of the main ways cigarette companies boost profits converting smokers to pricier brands. Premiumisation is still happening in developing countries, where incomes are rising. But elsewhere smokers are turning to cheaper brands or rolling their own cigarettes. Many smokers will not trade back up once the economy improves, largely because smoking and advertising bans have robbed the habit of its air of glamour. Euromonitor International, a research firm, forecasts that everywhere except in Asia and the Middle East prices will rise less from 2012 to 2017 than they did during the previous five years.