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Gov't warns of possible nicotine overdose thru use of e-cigarettes

The South Korean government warned of a possible overdose of nicotine for those who smoke electronic cigarettes Tuesday, while ordering a recall of 10 e-cigarettes over defective power cord plugs that may cause a fire or electric shock.

The 10 electric cord plugs of e-cigarettes subject to a recall contain a defective electrical insulator that may break down when exposed to an alternating current of over 3,000 volts, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

All 10 products are currently manufactured in China.

In addition to the physical dangers of using a defective product, the government said the very use of e-cigarettes may expose a person to greater health risks.

In a joint study with the Korea Consumer Agency, the government has found four e-liquids out of 25 products reviewed contained at least 11 percent more nicotine than they were supposed to, meaning those who use such products may unknowingly intake more nicotine than they wish to or can.

The study also found a problem with containers of e-liquids, most of which currently lack any warnings while 15 of them do not have childproof bottle caps despite the fact any amount of pure nicotine may be fatal to children and even adults when consumed directly.

The government said it will move to require the use of childproof bottle caps on all products and also intensify its managements of products containing nicotine and other harmful substances. (Yonhap)