Here we go again with the media reporting a story without understanding how vape technology works and how some products are safer than others.
So what the media is reporting right now is that a woman came into a store called “The Vapor Shop” located on Harlem Road in Machesney Park in Chicago complaining that the battery in her “vape pen” was malfunctioning, so the vape shop changed the battery for her.
After the battery was changed, she took a hit and the battery exploded. It caused serious injury to her face, it caused tooth damage, and it set a nearby desk on fire.
The Vapor Shop hasn’t said anything about the situation yet, stating that they would like to speak to their lawyer first, so this is about all we know about this story.
So here’s what I can gather from what we know.
In my mind, there are one of two things that could have gone wrong;
She is using a mech mod and there was user-error, either on her part or on the part of the vape shop. Whatever the user-error was, it caused a hard short and the battery exploded. If this is the case, this story should not be reported as being caused by a vape pen because a vape pen is totally different than a mech mod. Mech mods do not have safety features and the only people who use them should know the risks.
Now, let’s say it really was a vape pen or a regulated device. This story says that the vape shape replaced the battery. If this vape shop actually took apart a regulated device that was malfunctioning and replaced the battery, these guys are not only stupid, but they’re screwed. They’re gonna get sued. They should have told her that she should throw it away or send it to the manufacturer.
Either way, this isn’t a clear example of how vape devices are inherently dangerous, which is definitely how the media will portray it. This is a case of somebody doing something stupid that could have been prevented.
Based on a response from whoever manages their Google Business listing, it turns out that the woman who was injured was actually the owner’s daughter. They say it was a faulty battery, but I don’t think they have any way to prove that. Maybe it was, but these cases are almost always the result of user-error. They also say that she was using a sub-ohm tank on a mech mod, but they’ve never said what that device was. All they’ve said is that it was a high-ohm tank and that she’s been using this same set up for years with no issues. And they say she’s an experienced vaper who has worked in a vape shop.
Either way, I feel bad for the lady and for the family.
A lot of people say that sub-ohm tanks are okay on regular mech mods, but everyone agrees that tanks are not safe on hybrid mechs. I don’t know if she was using a hybrid mech though.
But even if you have a regular mech, I do think there are some increased risks with using a tank, mostly because pre-built coils in tanks are susceptible to manufacturing issues. For example, the resistance of the coils might not be built according to what it says on the package, the coils might fluctuate while firing, and the pre-built coils might be damaged before you even install it.
That’s just my opinion. Lots of people use tanks on mechs, but I personally don’t. I’ve seen way too many shorts happen on my own tanks while using regulated devices.
Anyway, in response to this, the owner discarded every mech mod that they had in the store and now they are hoping for their daughter to have a quick recovery. And I hope so as well.