Woman badly burned after vaping device explodes, officials say

A Virginia woman was severely burned when her vaping device reportedly burst into flames.

Heather Boyd, 34, was airlifted to a hospital Saturday after the device exploded while she was sitting in her car at a parking lot in Herndon, Virginia, authorities told FOX5DC.

“She’s screaming, ‘I’m burning, I’m burning,’ and I didn’t understand how bad it was until I saw her hands, but her entire index finger right here was cracked open and it was pretty bad,” said Dennis Whitaker, her boyfriend.

Whitaker said Boyd had just purchased new batteries for the device, but did not say what caused the explosion.

This type of explosion is rare, but it happens often enough for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to have a web page titled, “Tips to Help Avoid ‘Vape’ Battery Explosions.”

Some of the safety tips include only using batteries specifically recommended for the device and replacing the batteries if they get damaged or wet.

Much like the numerous videos on YouTube of vape device explosions, Whitaker said the device went off like a “big smoke bomb,” shattering and then catching fire.

At this point, firefighters said Boyd’s injuries are not life-threatening, but her condition was otherwise unknown, according to FOX5DC.