A 46-year-old social worker ended up receiving severe burn injuries after a spare vape battery caught fire inside his pocket.
Dan Vowles was finishing up a shift at work on November 1, 2020, when his pocket started to get warm.
He usually carries a spare vape battery with him to work so he could use it in case one battery loses a charge.
On this occasion, one of his spare batteries started to glow red and caught fire.
This caused horrific burn injuries on his hand and leg.
During an interview with Nottinghamshire Live, the man talked about the incident.
I had finished work, I was just finishing off a few bits and bobs, I was due to come home and I felt my pocket get warm. I thought I’d left my vape turned on in my pocket and the button had been pressed, but when I looked down and put my hand in my pocket, that’s when I noticed it spark. It sparked and then there was a flash, my pocket set on fire and the air turned blue with language. I shouted ‘get me out, get me out’, and the battery was glowing red after I had thrown it across the office. It was literally red hot, and when I went outside I noticed that my right hand had been burnt raw, the right hand side of my leg and the pocket was burnt. At the time I didn’t think my leg was injured as much as it was, I thought my hand was more significantly injured. But as time has gone on, I think I had just gone into shock and it had numbed everything.
Dan was rushed to a hospital by his colleagues.
He was then transferred to the burns unit at Nottingham’s City Hospital.
The man says he is unsure on why the battery exploded but fears that it may be down to a fault or the battery not being up to standard.
It was a freak accident, but I don’t think I’ll be carrying spare batteries in my pocket again. I wouldn’t advise anybody to carry batteries in their pocket. I don’t know what the solution would be for people who need their spare batteries. It’s put me in a cautious position because I put my batteries on charge overnight, but I’ve never had an issue with it. Nothing’s ever happened. I’ve known peoples’ batteries blow up while connected to the vape, but that’s because the button has been pressed for too long and it’s allowed the current to flow. But for a battery on its own to blow up, there’s something wrong there.
The Nottingham Fire and Rescue Service issued a warning to people telling everyone that people should not be keeping extra vape batteries inside their pockets.
Christ Emmott, the group manager for the fire service, released a statement about the incident, saying:
This is a reminder of the dangers vapes and vape batteries can cause. We want to urge the public to remain vigilant when purchasing batteries by making sure they are from a recognised and reputable trader. Never use damaged equipment or batteries and do not use counterfeit goods. Please remember when charging a vape to only use the charger designed specifically for the vape. Users should never charge them overnight and once they are fully charged they should be turned off and unplugged to avoid a potential electrical fire.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Dan, may he recover fast from the injuries that he had sustained.