Fitchburg man recovering from serious burns after vape device battery explodes

LUNENBURG, MASS. (WHDH) - A Fitchburg man is recovering from second-degree burns after a vape battery exploded in his pocket.

Tyler Newton says the batteries exploded and caught fire, sending flames shooting across his legs.

“I heard a loud pop,” he said, “and then flames coming out of my leg.”

It was a terrifying moment for Newton, who was on his way to pick up his young daughter after getting off from work in Lunenburg when the batteries exploded.

“I was beating up my leg with my hand,” he said. “I swerved a bunch of times while trying to put the fire out. Luckily, they were paving the road so they had one-way traffic only. If there was oncoming traffic I definitely would have hit someone.”

The excruciating pain can be felt just by looking at the burn photos.

He told 7News he received first- and second-degree burns.

“I have a small burn on my left kneecap, small burn on my left calf, large burn on my left thigh and left hand,” he said.

One of the lithium batteries even melted into the rubber floor mat in his Jeep.

Newton is back in the hospital after the incident, battling an infection. While he’s dealing with the severe burns, he says it could have been a lot worse.

“I am definitely glad my wife and daughter were not in the car with me,” he said.

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