Tuesday 20 August 2019

WATCH: Dramatic CCTV footage shows e-cigarette battery exploding in man's pocket - inches from child's pram

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Fire crews have released CCTV footage of the moment an e-cigarette battery exploded in the user's pocket, just inches from a child's pram.

According to West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service in the UK the images were captured inside the Trinity shopping centre in Leeds.

They show the man casually unaware of the plume of smoke coming from his pocket until it begins fizzing violently, emitting a bright light as it explodes and sending shoppers scampering for safety.

The fire service said the explosion occurred when a spare lithium-ion battery in the man's pocket came into contact with another metal item, such as coins or keys.

Fire investigator Jamie Lister said: "This footage clearly shows the dangers of storing batteries alongside any metal objects, be it keys, coins, or even your phone if it has a metal case.

"This is not the first time we have seen injuries caused by a lithium-ion battery exploding whilst being carried in someone's pocket. We really want the public to understand the risks which can be easily avoided.

"There does not need to be a fault with the battery, the problem is the incorrect storage of the batteries."

A similar incident occurred last month when a nightclub owner suffered second degree burns after his electronic cigarette exploded in his pocket. Amine Britel was outside his nightclub in Toulouse, France, when the device started to spark. 

E-cigarette users have been warned to carry batteries in a plastic case to prevent them short circuiting.

Mr Lister said: "There has been a marked increase in the number of fires we have seen, attributable to the incorrect storage of batteries.

"The use of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries is now commonplace in modern society and that's why we want people to be vigilant because a simple mistake could have a devastating consequence."

Although e-cigarettes are becoming increasingly popular, the US surgeon general warned earlier this month that they were leaving young people at risk of nicotine addiction, brain development problems and mood disorders.

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