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Couple sues vape shop after e-cigarette explodes

Posted at 6:07 PM, May 15, 2019

TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — An electric cigarette that exploded back in July caused one North Tonawanda woman, Amanda Pickard, to suffer severe burns to her inner thighs and legs. Now she is suing the vape shop that sold it to her boyfriend. Pickard's attorney, Hugh Russ, says the e-cig exploded less than a day after it was purchased from Planet Vape off Brighton Road in Tonawanda.

Russ is suing under product liability law, he says if a if a store puts a defective product into the stream of commerce, the store can be responsible for the consequences.

Although, Planet Vape's owner, Auston Mavrak, says he hadn't heard about the incident or the law suit before Tuesday.

“I’d say out of a 1000 sold maybe you have two or three that come back not working. Never as far as an exploding, I haven’t heard anything about that," Mavrak said. “If I have any awareness of a bad product, I don’t sell it.”

Mavrak says the model was a Sigelei SnowWolf and that every vape he sells is sealed in its original packaging. He says in the rare case where an e-cig may explode, it's likely because it was improperly used or stored.

It's unknown how much Pickard is suing Planet Vape for but it is confirmed that she racked up thousands in medical bills while she spent multiple nights in the hospital.