To date, dozens of deaths have been attributed to vaping-related lung injuries. As the vaping death toll continues to steadily increase, there is no doubt that the United States is facing a new epidemic.
America’s eyes are opening to the deception and negligence employed by vaping companies who used tactics reminiscent of the Big Tobacco companies of years past, as more and more areas begin to prohibit the sale and distribution of e-cigarettes.
There are many reasons for these bans — such as lack of regulation, misleading marketing, and irrefutable health risks — but among the most prominent reasons is the wave of vape lawsuits amassing against JUUL Labs and other vaping companies.
Breaking News: JUUL to Pay $40 Million Settlement
In June 2021, vape giant JUUL agreed to pay $40 Million to settle the lawsuit filed against the company by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein. The suit claimed that JUUL used questionable marketing practices to target teens and young adults, fueling widespread addiction.
Similar vape lawsuits have been filed by 13 other states.
Why File a Vape Lawsuit?
Current research has found that vapes and e-cigarettes may cause severe health risks, including death, lung injuries, seizures, and strokes.
Historically, children and teenagers have been targeted in marketing campaigns by vaping companies, such as JUUL Labs, increasing their risk of these devastating health effects.
Today, vaping companies are under legal scrutiny as families begin enlisting the help of vape attorneys to file lawsuits for vaping injuries and illnesses.
Recent vaping lawsuits have claimed the use of vape products caused:
- Lung injuries
- Worsening of existing conditions (such as asthma)
Vaping companies failed to warn consumers of the dangers of using their products. Now, vape users suffering from serious injuries may have the opportunity to receive financial compensation with the help of a vape lawyer.
Families across the U.S. are holding these companies accountable — you may be able to, as well. Start a free case review now.
Vape News and Recent Vaping Lawsuits
E-cigarette users and their families are now filing vaping lawsuits against vape manufacturers and distributors.
- In June 2021, JUUL agrees to pay a $40 Million settlement for concealing the true dangers and potency of nicotine in their products.
- As of January 2020, dozens of people have died from vaping-related lung injuries.
In September 2019, a man died after contracting acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) from vaping. He had normal lung function when he began vaping in May, but died just five months later.
- CEO of JUUL Labs stepped down September 25, 2019 to be replaced by a senior executive of the Big Tobacco company Altria.
- Washington police officer, Charles Wilcoxen, filed a vape lawsuit after falling ill from vaping-related lipoid pneumonia.
- The sale and distribution of flavored or counterfeit vaping products have been banned in some states, including California, Michigan, New York, and Massachusetts.
- Michael Bloomberg, former Mayor of New York City, has committed to spending $160 Million over the next three years in an attempt to ban flavored e-cigarettes.
- A class-action lawsuit filed by 13 vape users targets JUUL for false advertising and labeling, claiming the company's e-cigarettes contain 20% more nicotine than what is stated on the product labels.
- JUUL and several other e-cigarette companies have been ordered by the FDA to find solutions to combat the youth vaping epidemic within the next 60 days.
The vaping lawsuits mentioned above are only a sample of cases filed against JUUL, other vaping companies, and sellers. As additional vaping health risks are uncovered, more and more people will stand up against the companies that sold them harmful products.
What Is Vaping?
Vaping is a common name for e-cigarette use. E-cigarettes are small, battery-powered objects that are an alternative to traditional tobacco cigarettes.
Though e-cigarettes hit the market in 2007, in more recent years, their popularity skyrocketed. They are now one of the most popular tobacco products in the U.S.
E-cigarettes often look like regular cigarettes, pens, or USB drives, making them easy to conceal.
Is Vaping Bad for You?
Yes, vaping is bad for users — especially children and teenagers.
Attached to an e-cigarette is a liquid-filled cartridge. The liquid, commonly known as “e-liquid” or “vape juice,” often contains nicotine and other harmful substances. The e-liquid is heated, turning it into an aerosol that can be inhaled by the user. Many of the health risks of vaping trace back to the inhalation of this aerosol.
Many people believe that vaping is a safer alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes, but it’s becoming evident that vaping has many of the same health risks. What’s more, the rapid progression of vape-related illnesses is disturbing.
As more and more people fall victim to the lethal consequences of vaping, government officials and policymakers scramble to halt what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has deemed an “outbreak.”
Vaping can cause irreversible harm through lung injuries, seizures, and strokes. While vape injuries vary from case to case, all of them can be deadly.
What Is Causing These Injuries & Deaths?
The CDC has linked dozens of deaths to vape-related pulmonary illnesses, with the first being reported in August 2019.
The medical community is still unsure of the exact cause of death in these cases. However, research from the University of Utah suggests it may be a type of lipoid pneumonia, characterized by fat molecules (lipids) entering the lungs.
One of the latest discoveries circulating the media is the presence of vitamin E acetate in vapes. This chemical compound can lead to chronic inflammation, acquired respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), lung disease, and death.
Government agencies are not taking this epidemic lightly. The CDC currently has over 100 employees investigating the deadly consequences of e-cigarettes in an effort to reduce the number of vaping-related deaths in the near future.
Lung Injuries Caused By Vaping
When someone inhales vaping e-liquid, they are inhaling dangerous substances into their lungs — potentially causing serious lung injuries.
Notable vape-related lung injuries include:
- Bleeding in the lungs
- Bronchial pneumonia
- Collapsed lung
- Fluid in the lungs
- Lung failure
- Lung infection
- Popcorn lung
The CDC has reported thousands of cases of lung injuries related to vaping in the U.S. alone.
According to National Public Radio (NPR), one 18-year-old was told he had the “lungs of a 70-year-old” as a result of vaping. He was admitted to the hospital after suffering from respiratory problems.
Seizures and Strokes Caused By Vaping
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that seizures can be the result of nicotine toxicity. This occurs when a person inhales high concentrations of nicotine, a stimulant typically — and often unknowingly — found in e-cigarettes.
As of April 2019, the FDA is investigating nearly 130 reports of seizures related to vaping. According to an April 2019 Florida lawsuit, daughter of Erin and Jared NesSmith was only 14 years old when she began using JUUL e-cigarettes. Enticed by the products’ sweet, fruity flavors, the young girl had no idea that she was inhaling nicotine. She has since suffered multiple seizures because of vaping.
In addition, a study presented at the International Stroke Conference in 2019 linked vaping to a higher risk of stroke.
These are not isolated incidents. A growing number of teenagers and adults are suffering seizures and strokes from vaping — and with over 70% of the e-cigarette market share, JUUL is the main company at fault.
Today, JUUL advertises its e-cigarettes as a cessation method for adult smokers. However, this wasn’t always the case. Before JUUL began proclaiming their desire to help adults quit smoking, they ran a youth-focused advertising campaign, “Vaporized.”
With brightly-colored flyers and ads, trendy product launch parties, and heavy social media interaction with underaged followers, it’s no wonder the company has been accused of igniting a dangerous vaping craze among young people.
Battery Explosion Injuries Caused By Vaping
In addition to the injuries and deaths from inhaling the vapor, defective vape batteries have been known to explode without warning and cause serious harm.
Injuries from vape battery explosions include:
- Broken bones
- Deep cuts and bleeding
- Loss of teeth, eyes, and fingers
- Severe burns
According to a 2019 CNN report, a vape pen exploded in a teenager’s mouth while the device was in use. The force of the explosion broke his jaw down the middle and blew out several of his teeth.
Vaping Health Risks
The most notable health risks of vaping — nicotine addiction and toxic chemical exposure — put users in danger of a variety of illnesses and injuries.
Vaping illnesses and injuries associated with nicotine and chemical exposure may include:
- Brain development issues
- Bronchiolitis obliterans (aka Popcorn Lung – caused by exposure to the flavoring chemical diacetyl)
- Heart problems
- Respiratory illnesses
Nicotine addiction from vaping may lead to seizures, strokes, and other health problems.
According to the U.S. Surgeon General, a single JUULpod may contain the same amount of nicotine as 20 cigarettes — an entire pack. Additionally, early JUUL products contained around two to five times more nicotine than other types of e-cigarettes.
Almost any product that contains nicotine can be addictive. However, vape products are especially dangerous because the nicotine in e-liquids is more easily absorbed by the body.
Further, unlike traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes have varying levels of nicotine. This means that a user may inhale a higher dosage of the drug in a shorter amount of time.
The FDA notes that teenagers have the highest risk of developing nicotine addiction and resulting health problems.
Toxic Chemical Exposure
According to the U.S. Surgeon General, vape products may contain toxic chemicals that harm the body when inhaled.
Toxic chemicals and substances found in vaping devices include:
- Heavy metals
- Volatile organic compounds
- Ultrafine particles
Medical experts are currently investigating how inhaling the toxic chemicals found in vape products may harm the lungs and respiratory system.
Diacetyl and Popcorn Lung
Diacetyl is a chemical used to give foods, such as microwavable popcorn, a buttery flavor — however, when inhaled, the chemical may cause popcorn lung.
Popcorn lung got its name after factory workers at microwavable popcorn warehouses inhaled diacetyl and developed bronchiolitis obliterans (commonly known as popcorn lung).
Popcorn lung causes:
- Difficulty breathing
- Lung inflammation
- Permanent scarring
- Incurable lung damage
Today, diacetyl is often used by vape companies to make flavored vape liquids. Vaping may cause diacetyl to enter directly into the lungs, introducing health risks that are still under investigation. In fact, diacetyl has been banned from e-cigarettes in Europe because of the possible health risks.
Dangers of JUUL
In 2018, approximately 20.8% of high schoolers reported using vaping devices, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This number reveals an alarming increase over the past seven years since, in 2011, only 1.5% of high schoolers reported current use of e-cigarettes.
This is largely due to the e-cigarette giant, JUUL Labs. In recent years, JUUL has come under fire due to allegations that their products have caused serious health issues in users.
Most recently, the Lake County State Attorney's Office in Illinois filed a lawsuit against JUUL Labs in August 2019 claiming the company used deceptive marketing aimed at teenagers.
The company has been accused of violating the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and the Prevention of Tobacco Use by Minors and Sale and Distribution of Tobacco Products Act.
Teenagers and JUUL
Teenagers between the ages of 15-17 are more likely to use JUUL products than the company’s primary demographic, adults trying to quit smoking. This is largely due to the company’s youth-focused marketing tactics.
JUUL e-liquids come in dessert- and fruit-like flavors, accounting for a large part of the products’ appeal. Further, JUUL vaping devices have a small and sleek design that resembles a USB drive. This makes it easy for underage teenagers to hide JUULs from parents and teachers.
JUUL Labs has taken steps to prevent minors from purchasing their products — such as deleting many of their social media accounts — but the number of adolescents who still use JUUL e-cigarettes is alarming. These young people are now addicted — so many will likely continue to use the product for years to come.
The CDC recently conducted a study in which they surveyed 20,189 middle and high school students to determine how many young people used e-cigarettes in 2018. The data below shows their findings.
|E-Cigarette Use Among Middle and High Schoolers in 2018|
|Middle School Girls||4.8% of middle schoolers vaped|
|Middle School Boys||5.1% of middle schoolers vaped|
|High School Girls||18.8% of high schoolers vaped|
|High School Boys||22.6% of high schoolers vaped|
Unfortunately, since a person’s brain doesn’t stop developing until age 25, teens are highly susceptible to the mental and physical health risks of vaping — especially nicotine addiction, according to Yale Medicine.
File a Vape Lawsuit — Hold Vape Companies Accountable
Vape products can be dangerous to anyone who uses them, but children and teens are at a greater risk. If you believe that vaping may have caused you or your child to get sick or injured, you can receive vape legal help.
In over 40 years of practice, Sokolove Law has helped thousands of families across the U.S. recover over $8.3 Billion in verdicts and settlements. Our mission will always be to give everyone the same opportunity for justice, regardless of income or race.
That said, your family may be eligible to receive vape compensation if an e-cigarette product has brought harm to you or your child.
Our vape lawyers are standing by to help you — contact us today for a free legal case review.