A Bend man is suing a vaping retailer after alleging a vape pen exploded in his pants, causing severe burns and nerve damage.

Anthony Yillik filed a lawsuit this week against the Eugene-based company Vape Game LLC, after the battery in the vape pen he bought at its closed Bend location ignited, “resulting in a fireball” and causing severe and permanent injuries to his right leg, according to court documents.

Yillik argues that there were no labels warning him that removing the plastic covering on the battery could make it more likely to ignite. The lawsuit alleges negligence.

He is asking for $160,000 to cover medical expenses and noneconomic damages related to his physical and mental suffering.

The owner of Vape Game and Yillik’s attorney did not respond to requests for comment.

Accidents related to vape pens have garnered more attention in the past few years. Earlier this week, a Nevada teenager reported having an e-cigarette explode in his mouth.

Almost 200 e-cigarette fire and explosion incidents were found from 2009 to 2016, according to a report from the U.S. Fire Administration, 133 of which resulted in injuries. New recommendations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration came out earlier this month suggesting companies provide detailed information about batteries, and suggesting plans to address overheating, fire and explosions.

— Reporter: 541-633-2160, bvisser@bendbulletin.com

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