SAFETY ALERT: Exploding vapor pens

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Vapor pens continue to grow in popularity, in large part because they’re seen as a healthier alternative to smoking cigarettes, but there’s a major safety issue that people who use vaporizers need to know about.

A growing number of users are having their vape pens explode, causing serious injuries.

One vape shop tells us this problem happens a lot more often than people in the industry want to admit.

The main danger is with the batteries. If not used properly, they can explode with enough force to break bones and cause severe burns.

Class was ending for Castle Rock resident Marcus Forzani when his vape pen exploded.

“Bell rang. Got up to go get my jacket that was at the other side of the classroom. Five steps within that sparks started flying out of my pocket. Looks like someone was literally welding in my pocket,” Forzani told KDVR.

These types of accidents are happening more frequently.

“Batteries can explode for many different reasons; anything from user error to manufacturer defect,” said Dragons Lair Vapors employee Steven Adams.

Most of the time it’s user error with people using unregulated mods. That’s a vape that doesn’t regulate the size of the hit you take.

“If you put in your batteries the wrong way in a box mod or an unregulated mod, the moment you fire, the moment you hit your button to go it’s going to go off,” said Adams.

The battery can also explode if your vape is accidentally going off by itself.

“If you’re just auto firing, your battery’s in correctly, but it’s firing without your knowledge, you can go up to about a minute, maybe two minutes, before this is a real danger,” said Adams.

This problem is growing, because more people are vaping without proper safety knowledge, but the solution to the problem is a simple one.

“I suggest a regulated box mod. These have safety features built in to them. They’re almost dummy proof,” said Adams.

Forzani hopes his story will be a lesson to people vaping.

“I just feel if they know how tragic it is it might make a movement and get rid of it or something,” said Forzani.

In the vaping community some people build their own unregulated box mods and use coils that can’t take the voltage put out by the batteries, which can cause them to explode.

If you’re doing that or if you have any questions about vaping safety, you can go into your local vape shop and they’ll make sure you’re being safe.