The hidden dangers of e-cigarettes

November 28, 2014 6:03 am

These days it’s becoming more and more commonplace to see people ‘smoking’ e-cigarettes. They’re meant to be healthier – and 2.1 million Brits are now using them. But apparently they have hidden dangers.

According to recent reports, fire services in the UK are now attending at least one blaze caused by e-cigarettes each week. The most common reason for this is that people are connecting the devices to incompatible chargers.

Rechargeable e-cigarettes contain liquid nicotine, a heating element and a battery. Many come with their own charger but some don’t, which means that people use chargers meant for other gadgets. This may deliver too much voltage or too much current and, as a result, devices are ‘exploding’ while on charge, or batteries are breaking up or overheating.

Advice issued

Because of the growing number of fires, the Chief Fire Officers Association has now issued advice for the charging or e-cigarettes:

  • Always use the correct charger and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Never charge a battery that has signs of damage, has been dropped, or has been subjected to impact.
  • Never plug a charger into a non-approved mains power transformer.
  • Check that your e-cigarette battery has overcharge or overheat protection.
  • Remove the battery from charge when complete – don’t over-charge.
  • Never leave a battery on charge unattended.
  • Don’t use if wet or exposed to water.
  • Do not over-tighten the atomiser or when connecting to the charger.

Ensure you dispose of batteries correctly.