E-cigarette explodes in Paso Robles teen’s mouth

April 27, 2016
Daniel McClelland

Daniel McClelland

A Paso Robles teen is in the hospital after an e-cigarette exploded in his face, burned a hole in the his tongue and caused him to lose several teeth.

On April 18, Daniel McClelland, 17, was vaping an e-cigarette while riding in a friend’s car when it exploded and caught on fire. The impact cracked windows and seriously burned the teen.

McClelland can now breathe without a ventilator, but he still cannot completely close his larynx or speak, according to a GoFundMe page.

McClelland is currently communicating using a dry-erase board, Facebook and text messaging. He remains in the ICU at the Fresno Regional Burn Unit.

McClelland’s family is requesting donations on the GoFundMe page to help cover mounting medical bills.



  1. mkaney says:

    Yeah uh once again it’s time to call bull#%*#.

    It was not the e-cig that exploded it was the battery. In fact, it was not an “e-cig” at all. E-cigs are sealed devices which are electronically regulated to prevent problems with lithium ion batteries. Lithium Ion and Lithium Polymer batteries are touchy batteries that have the potential to vent and explode. They won’t do that in any commonly available e-cig on the market.

    He was using an unregulated mod, which means basically he took a tube, put a battery in it, and wired an atomizer to it. He may have even wrapped the atomizer coil himself. People do this so they can get big “vape clouds” and look cool. What happened is unfortunate, but he has no one to blame but himself.

    (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  2. achillesheal says:

    Maybe time for a surgeon generals warning on the e-cigs?

    Contents flammable.

    (7) 11 Total Votes - 9 up - 2 down
    • mkaney says:

      This was not a consumer e-cig. This was a “custom mod” that he built himself. That is the source of the problem here

      (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down
  3. CentralcoastRN says:

    E cigarettes are being marketed to children/teens as a “safer” alternative to smoking real cigarettes. I think it should be a reasonable expectation that a product not explode in one’s face.

    As a side note, PPO still leaves a family with 20% co pays and deductibles.

    I’m so sorry for this 17 year old and his family.

    (3) 11 Total Votes - 7 up - 4 down
    • mkaney says:

      It is a reasonable expectation, and one which you do have when you purchase an e-cig. If, however, you build your own “mod” by purchasing parts separately, and winding your own coils, whose responsibility is it when you cause the battery to explode because you do not have enough electrical knowledge to be using a lithium battery in that manner.

      The battery, which is what exploded, does come with a warning on it.

      (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down
      • CentralcoastRN says:

        The article doesn’t say that he modified it. The reader can only go by what is written.

        Are you saying you know for a fact this young man somehow modified the e-cig, or are you guessing/supposing that is what happened based on some level of knowledge you have on engineering?

        I have a basic knowledge of e cigarettes, but I know NOTHING of people modifying them. Why would someone want to do this? Does it make them look cooler or somehow vape better?

        I feel horrible for this young man and his family. I hope he fully recovers.

        (-1) 1 Total Votes - 0 up - 1 down
  4. racket says:

    Perhaps the gofundme could be packaged as a buy-in for the sure-to-be-upcoming lawsuit. “Help us with X-percent of our med bills, and will share Y-percent of our judgement.”

    (12) 30 Total Votes - 21 up - 9 down
  5. Rambunctious says:

    “McClelland’s family is requesting donations on the GoFundMe page to help cover mounting medical bills”

    What happened to Obamacare? or covered CA? I feel bad for this kid but if every time someone hurts themselves a GoFundMe account gets set up maybe that should be the new health care system. If people like you you will get the money to cover your bills if people don’t like you you don’t. This way we will all try harder to be liked.

    (13) 37 Total Votes - 25 up - 12 down

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