California is one of several states to fall victim to the outbreak of vaping related lung injuries. Since June 2019, about 150 people in California with a history of vaping have been hospitalized for severe breathing issues and lung damage, three of whom have died. Concerns over these seemingly mysterious injuries and illnesses have prompted California lawmakers to take action to help protect the public. San Francisco was the first major U.S. city to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes, and Los Angeles is considering taking the same measures. Last month, Governor Newsom signed a law that will prohibit smoking and vaping at state parks and beaches starting in 2020.
JUUL Labs, a major e-cigarette company headquartered in San Francisco, has recently come under fire for its marketing tactics that appeal to minors and contribute to the staggering number of American youth who use e-cigarettes. This week, a new lawsuit is claiming that the company’s irresponsibility extends even further.
In a lawsuit filed in California, a former JUUL executive is alleging that the company knowingly shipped one million contaminated pods earlier this year. Plaintiff Siddharth Breja claims that JUUL refused to recall the tainted pods or warn the public, despite his insistence that the company take action.
The lawsuit points to several concerning allegations regarding JUUL’s operations and disregard for product safety. For example, following a raid by the FDA, JUUL’s former CEO instructed executives not to mention any safety or regulatory issues in writing of any kind to avoid further action by the FDA. The company’s former CFO was also quoted as expressing carelessness with regard to the quality of JUUL’s pods, noting that their “drunk and vaping” customers would not notice if they shipped expired or nearly expired pods.
Due to the health risks and highly addictive nature of nicotine products, manufacturers have a duty to provide transparency and warnings whenever necessary. It’s an issue that is especially close to our hearts. In 2016, David S. Casey, Jr. represented the family of Tony Gwynn against U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company over its marketing scheme which led to the rising star’s addiction to smokeless tobacco. CaseyGerry also represented the Governor of California against Big Tobacco in a landmark settlement in 1998. In response to the mounting reports of vaping-related lung injuries, CaseyGerry has published information for lung injury victims. Feel free to contact us with any questions. You can also call CaseyGerry at (619) 238-1811.