Vaping Explosion Knocks Out Man’s Teeth, Rips Hole in Tongue

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Albany, N.Y. - Kenneth Barbero of Albany, NY was enjoying a nice millennial vaping session when the hand-held device he was using blew up in his face; knocking out teeth, ripping a hole in his tongue and leaving his hands covered in burns.

"[It was] like an M80 bomb went off in my mouth," Barbero told CNN affiliate WTEN through understandably muffled speech.

Barbero's mother told WTEN she thinks the vaporizer's battery exploded. "The battery had exploded inside and everything shot out...went into his mouth and burned everything," she said.

When it comes to vaping accidents, these explosions seem to be a common thread: Earlier in May, an Alabama teen was burned after a classmate's e-cigarette exploded and sent a hot battery flying into his face. In February 2016, dramatic gas station security footage showed a man's leg being engulfed by flames, an apparent result of another e-cigarette explosion.

The list goes on and on, but according to a representative from the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association, the occurrence is both rare and preventable.

"It's not so much an issue of the e-vapor product but with the lithium batteries they are using, and most are mismatched to the charger," TVECA's Tom Kiklas told CNN in February.

If you want to vape and ensure all of your facial features stay attached, Kiklas recommends using only the batteries and charging accessories that come with or are made for the product. He also advises against putting any e-cigarette device in pockets, since coins can rub against the device and short-circuit the lithium battery.


  • Yagwit

    Only use married batteries specific to your device. Do not build coils if you haven’t been educated in OHMs law. Do not tamper with your device. ALL rechargeable batteries have the potential to explode. I have had headphones catch fire seconds after leaving my head. You must use the correct charger at all times. I feel this is a survival of the fittest issue.

  • Ron Sechler

    Vaping got me off of a 30 year cigarette habit. If you know your equipment and use it properly, there is no danger.

    I would like to see the news report on every death, illness, or injury related to usage of tobacco products. Then maybe these sensationalist stories wouldn’t seem so outrageous.

  • Rob

    The batteries do not explode on any of the store sold sold mods, there is no way one can blow up in side a Mouth! They are made so if the battery gives out it vents out the bottom safely away from face. So if this story is true. Then maybe the mod was tempered with. And no its not better to just smoke an old fashioned cigarette! I have been cigarette free for 2 years now . Thanks to vaping!!!!!! Vape on and Vape safe! And don’t put batteries in your pocket with keys or change!

    • RS

      It could happen with a mech mod with too low of a build, if he used the wrong charger for the batteries, or used the wrong kind of batteries. This is one reason that I don’t like unregulated mods.

    • Zozymus (@zozymus)

      Me too. I smoked for 27 years before I came clean and went to vaping. After three years, my lungs have never been happier. It’s NICE to lay down to go to sleep and not have to listen to my lungs gurgling and wheezing. If you purchase reputable equipment from reputable dealers, you’re fine.

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