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FDA puts e-cigarettes on unsafe products list, warns retailers

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is a federal agency that is tasked with warning consumers and retailers in Kentucky and elsewhere about defective or unreasonably dangerous products. One product that is becoming a known danger in the FDA lexicon of unsafe products is the e-cigarette. The agency has issued warnings to retailers to stop the illegal sales of vaping products to minors under the brand Juul.

The product has been tagged with a large amount of evidence that presents it as carrying health risks, including as a potential gateway to acquiring the smoking habit for life. In addition, FDA officials report that the device can overheat and explode if mechanically defective. Young people have used the product to "vape" at school and in public. The process involves heating a liquid into an aerosol device and inhaling the smoke, which is called vaping.

The liquid may also contain harmful toxins and carcinogens. What most users don't know, according to the FDA, is that the device contains nicotine in every puff. The product thus contains health risks and the possible risk of explosion and burn injuries. The manufacturer, Juul Labs, is cooperating with the FDA to eliminate use by children. The company bills the product as an alternate, safer method of smoking for adult smokers.

A consumer in Kentucky or elsewhere may bring a lawsuit for personal injury against a retailer or manufacturer of unsafe products that the consumer has used in the manner directed. When those basic elements are proved, the consumer can collect damages on a legal theory of strict liability. In that case, contributory negligence by the user is not a defense to liability. Negligence and warranty are other legal theories that are pursued in product liability cases in addition to strict liability.

Source:, "FDA cracks down on sales of Juul tobacco products to minors", April 25, 2018

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