E-cigarettes have gained widespread popularity as an alternative to traditional tobacco cigarettes, with hundreds of millions of these devices expected to be imported into the United States in 2015. The majority of imported e-cigarettes are from China, where most of these devices are manufactured without any regulations or safety standards. E-cigarettes are marketed as a “safer alternative” to regular tobacco cigarettes, but new concerns about their safety are coming to light.
Recent news stories report the risk of fires caused by e-cigarettes, which use powerful lithium ion batteries, and off-market sales of cheap, inferior devices is a threat to reputable marketers of these products. As an attorney working on national subrogation defense programs for product manufacturers, I have been involved with several fire investigations in the past year where it was revealed that an e-cigarette device and charger were present in the area of origin of the fire and suspected as the likely cause.