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CFO Jimmy Patronis Consumer Alert: Beware of E-cigarette Fire Hazards

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis warns Floridians about the growing dangers involved with e-cigarette use and the possibility of fire or injury caused by accidental explosions. E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that have become a popular alternative to smoking, but they can be hazardous.
CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “Recently, a Manatee County resident was airlifted to a local hospital with second and third degree burns after an e-cigarette exploded in his pocket. In May, a vape pin explosion was found to be the cause of death of a St. Petersburg man. Floridians should be aware of the real fire hazards associated with e-cigarettes and protect themselves from the serious injuries these devices can cause.”
According to a 2017 report from the U.S. Fire Administration, there were at least 195 incidents in which an electronic cigarette exploded or caught fire from 2009 through 2016, resulting in 133 injuries, 38 of which were severe.

Tips to help avoid e-cigarette explosions:

• Consider using devices with safety features such as firing button locks, vent holes, and protection against overcharging.
• Don’t let batteries come in contact with coins, keys, or other metals in your pocket. Keep loose batteries in a case to prevent contact with metal objects.
• Never charge a device with a phone or tablet charger. Always use the charger that came with it.
• Don’t charge a device overnight or leave it charging unattended.
• Replace the batteries if they get damaged or wet. If the device gets damaged and the batteries are not replaceable, contact the manufacturer.
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