Is Vaping Really Safer Than Smoking?

A new law in Indiana recently went into effect regarding E-liquid and vaping. This new law, House Bill 1432, is meant to tighten E-liquid and vaping regulations, including:

  • E-liquid sellers will not be able to sell E-liquid to minors.
  • E-liquid manufacturers will be required to acquire an Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission permit before producing, bottling and selling E-liquid. The permit will cost $1,000 and would not expire for five years. After that, it will cost $500 to renew the permit.
  • E-liquid manufacturers will be required to use childproof caps when they bottle E-liquid, use certain types of safety equipment during manufacturing and have additional security on hand at E-liquid production locations.
  • E-liquid manufacturers must give a security firm access to inspect and regulate their facilities to make sure that nothing is being tampered with and they are producing a quality product.

These new laws are a response to the fact that, in the last few years, using E-liquid and vaping have shot to popularity in our society. Vaping is the process of using an E-Cigarette or E-cig to vaporize E-liquid, also known as E-juice, to create vapor that can be inhaled similar to smoking a cigarette. In many cases, vaping appeals to people who are looking for a safer alternative to smoking cigarettes. However, how safe is it using E-liquid and vaping?

Can I Get Hurt Using E-Liquid and Vaping?

There have been multiple cases of E-liquid and vaping-related injuries. Some of these injuries have been from E-cigarettes exploding while in use and others from usage leading to lung injuries:

  • According to CNN, a man using an E-cigarette when it exploded was left withsevere injuries, including burns on his hand, lost teeth and a hole in his tongue
  • The Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reported that a woman suffered lung injuries and developed a rare form of pneumonia after vaping for around three months
  • The Huffington Post reported on an E-cig explosion that fractured a Tennessee man’s vertebrae, leaving him potentially paralyzed
  • A teen’s eyes were damaged when an E-cigarette exploded while he was using it, according to a CBS News report
  • Another incident mentioned in the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinelhighlighted the case of a 60-year-old Vermont man who suffered hypersensitivity pneumonitis

In the case of the E-cig explosion injuries, there have been claims that the devices’ lithium ion batteries could be to blame. In 2014, the US Fire Administration released a report alleging lithium ion batteries are a fire risk. Reportedly, due to the cylindrical shape of E-cigarettes, their lithium ion batteries, which are used to heat the E-liquid inside the E-cig, may have an increased risk of exploding.

As far as the respiratory diseases and lung injuries go, an investigation by theMilwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel allegedly found that some of the locally made E-liquids they studied contained diacetyl as well as other dangerous chemicals. According to the report, diacetyl and these other chemicals can cause permanent and even fatal lung diseases. The Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinelinvestigation also unearthed signs of inadequate E-liquid testing. This may have led to manufacturers claiming to produce diacetyl-free E-liquid that actually contained diacetyl.