Unfortunately the coverage hasn’t offered any information on the cause of the incident but images indicate the battery vented because it was over-stressed or following a short circuit. The explosion resulted in James suffering a fracture to his neck and finger, burns to his hand, a damaged cornea and blew a hole in the roof of his mouth about the size of a two pence piece.
"It was just a normal day," explained Lauria. "I'm at work and things quieted down and I stepped away for a second like I always do. Next thing I know, it exploded and I was on my way to a hospital in an ambulance, and that is the last thing I remember."
According to Fox, the injuries resulted in him being airlifted to the University of Alabama's burn unit, where he spent a week in the ICU. His father added: “He had burns to his hand and a fractured neck and finger, and burns to his cornea. It blew a hole through his pallet and at the same time, flames went down and he got first-degree burns on his chest and up on his face. It forced his front tooth up into his gum- out of sight -and chipped the other one and damaged a few other lower teeth.”
The explosion could have happened if the 510 pin wasn’t protruding from the base of atomiser or the battery was at fault. Cheap and damaged batteries are more likely to vent under stress, and high currents can cause genuine cells to fail if they aren’t designed for such use.
The image of the damaged mod shows that the cell has vented. This is designed into the cell so that it doesn’t explode but the gases released obviously failed to escape from the mod tube – causing it to become akin to a pipe bomb.
What the image doesn’t show is any damage to the mod itself, or the atomiser, leading to the conclusion that this vented through the atomiser body as happened to Travis Nummerdor from South Dakota in May.