An unexpected e-cigarette explosion inside the pants pocket of a U.K. man left him with horrific burn injuries and agonizing pain.
Darren Wilson, a gas engineer and father of three, told the Liverpool Echo that he was busy remodeling his house when the e-cigarette explosion occurred. He said he had been standing by the kitchen door when sudden loud fizzing, sparking, and smoke made him think someone had thrown a firecracker into the doorway.
“I looked down and my pocket was going off like a banger; it was fizzing and sparking and all smoke was coming from it,” Mr. Wilson, 37, told the Liverpool Echo.
The new batteries inside Mr. Wilson’s e-cigarette had exploded in the pocket of his work pants – one of the worst places for an e-cigarette malfunction to occur. The tight confines of his pants pocket kept the white-hot flaming device close to his skin, resulting in serious burn injuries to his left leg, testicles and groin.
“It was like my legs were melting, burning and melting, all the way to the hospital,” Mr. Wilson told the Echo. He was initially treated at Aintree University Hospital north of Liverpool before being transferred to a major burn unit at Whiston Hospital.
Images published by the Echo show the severe damage that the exploding e-cigarette battery caused to his leg. Mr. Wilson told the paper that he has to have morphine every time he needs to shower or have it cleaned. The wounds, which are being treated with skin grafts from his butt, need to be redressed every eight hours.
Like many people who vape, Mr. Wilson said he turned to e-cigarettes to quit smoking regular cigarettes and improve his health, never expecting to be blown up by the device. He indicated to the Echo that the decision to use e-cigarettes now seems like a foolish one.
Mr. Wilson’s partner, Claire Mulhearn, told the Liverpool Echo: “I just said to him, you’re a gas engineer, you’ve never had any problems or burns, and you get blown up by an e-cig.”