E-cigarettes present new problems for Korean military

January 14, 2015
(KBS-TV news screen capture)

(KBS-TV news screen capture)

After battery explosion injures soldier, charging of electronic cigarettes in living quarters is no longer allowed

By Brian Han

An electronic cigarette battery exploded while charging at a South Korean military barracks in Yangpyeong County in Gyeonggi Province.

The incident left one soldier with minor burns on his face and forced 10 others to evacuate the area around midnight.

Those involved said the incident began with a loud bang followed by a small fire that was eventually contained.

Although electronic cigarettes are becoming more popular in South Korea amid the recent cigarette tax hike, it’s presenting some new problems.

For South Korean military privates who are paid 129,400 won (about $120) a month, they must look for cheaper smoking alternatives to stay within budget. As a result, these soldiers are buying cheaper alternatives that are manufactured in China with little to no safety regulations.

The South Korean military will no longer allow the charging of electronic cigarettes in living quarters.



  1. Norman

    January 14, 2015 at 5:22 PM

    If the military is all about disciplining it’s ranks, is it not possible to order all military personnel to quit smoking? It has no benefits whatsoever to the smoker other than cause cancer and other ailments later.

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  3. Joanna

    January 14, 2015 at 9:01 PM

    Norman, I see you’ve never smoked. Congratulations! As I’m in the process of quitting, let me tell you it’s not that easy. The only reason I’m at the 7 day mark is I started vaping. I’m in the process of stepping down my nicotine as well, and that’s been hit and miss.

    Regarding the story, this is why you don’t buy cheap vapes at the gas station, and follow basic battery safety.

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    September 21, 2015 at 3:00 AM

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