Unattended Battery Charger Causes House Fire

Screen Shot 2016-01-18 at 10.30.27 PM

A father of two suffered horrific
burns to his face and arms after leaving
a rechargeable battery UNATTENDED
whilst charging.

The 30-year-old said it felt like
someone had held a blow torch to his
face during the 4.30am ordeal.

 

blowtorch

A blowtorch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He frantically put out the flames
with a pillow and gathered up his two
young kids and fiancee to get them
out of the house.
Despite repeated warnings in the
media NOT to leave batteries charging
whilst unattended, Kevin SLEPT
with the battery charging on his PILLOW.

 

Pillow

A pillow – deadly if held over the face, choked with or repeatedly hit until eventually it caused a graze which turned infected

A source from the local fire department
commented
“Every year, thousands of house
fires are caused by people leaving battery
chargers unattended. We urge
the public to thoroughly familiarise
themselves with the safety information
surrounding these products, to
always use the correct charger and
NEVER to sleep while their batteries
are charging. This includes mobile
phones, tablet computers, electronic
cigarettes – in fact anything with a
rechargeable battery”
Do YOU think rechargeable batteries
should be BANNED? Click below
to vote in our poll.

Screen Shot 2016-01-18 at 10.47.22 PM

So, obviously this is a fake headline but, apart from the comment from the fake fire service “source” (like any “sources” in newspapers are ever real people), the rest of the story is true.

It’s a horrible thing to happen and the poor victim has my deepest sympathies.

Accidents happen all the time.   Caused by people, caused by nature, caused by pets, caused by electrical items, caused by CARS, for gods sake, there’s thousands of those kind of accidents EVERY DAY

But none of these things  (apart from the major ones) make the news.   In fact, if the headline in a newspaper appeared as the one in this post, it would barely make the first few pages of a local paper, let alone a large national paper with a huge readership.

The poor chap that’s the focus of this story has been vilified, abused and criticised online, not only is he having to deal with the injuries, he’s having to deal with an onslaught of vapers hurling crap at him.   People are angry that yet another story has come out that will be used by those in power to shape their ill informed decisions and read by the public who are becoming increasingly intolerant of vaping as a result.

I don’t want to get into the in’s and out’s of battery safety or user error or any of that business, it’s happened, what can he and us learn from it?

1 – Don’t leave charging batteries unattended
2 – If you don’t follow number 1 and cause a fire, please don’t sell your story to the papers

Vape safely people!

And thanks to everyone that has read my blog so far, shared it, commented on it and all that jazz.    The vaping community is getting despondent, we’ve not lost the fight.

And, even if they think they’ve won, we’ll do it anyway!

VC

Please comment, share, squeal like a pig and give the facebook page a like https://www.facebook.com/thevcrusader/

Don’t drink the Water

water

 

I saw this picture on facebook recently, it followed a similar image I saw describing the dangers of oxygen.

Whilst there is both humourous and scientific entertainment value to be gleaned from the photo what I like about it is that it exposes the ridiculousness of the common or garden anti vaping meme or link that gets rattled around the interweb by Daily Fail readers .

The point is, behind all of the click grabbing headlines about popcorn lung and cancer, EVERYTHING is harmful to  you – at a certain point.

Likewise EVERYTHING is not harmful to you – at a certain point.

  • Arsenic – not harmful to you – at a certain point
  • Cyanide – not harmful to you – at a certain point
  • Nicotine – YOU GET THE PICTURE
Arsen_1a

Some Arsenic, yesterday (looks like a transformers dick)

And on the flipside – all of these things will kill you – at a certain point (this is not an exhaustive list)

oranges, water, air, oxygen, milk, potatoes, cheese, broccoli, pasta, ice cream, apples, crisps (chips if you’re in the U States of America), cereal bars, pot noodles, your own fingernails, life.

I said it wasn’t an exhaustive list.

So, whilst I do not encourage the sharing of ANY anti vaping propaganda, I do encourage the sharing of any photos that parody the stupidity of the bad science these trashy media outlets regurgitate

Share, comment, like, love, hate, speak, FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHT TO VAPE!!!!!!

 

VC

 

Renormalising Normal

hello-my-name-is-normal

I watch films.   Some new films, some old films, some kind of in the middle films.   In summary, films from all ages.

And frequently in these films I see people – I think they’re called Actors, smoking.   Yes, that’s right, SMOKING (dramatic music of some kind)

Evil, evil SMOKING (more dramatic music)

So, we all know SMOKING is evil, yeah.   For me I’ve known smoking was evil, way back to the 1980’s when there were those superman posters with him battling “Nick O’ Teen” – an 80 a day or so smoker, quite possibly Irish with that surname who, for some reason, wanted to get everyone smoking.

Of course Superman always beat him, firstly because he’s Superman and secondly even a non-superman could beat an 80 a day smoker in a fight.

But, that aside, I know Smoking is evil, we all know smoking is evil but, you still see it in the movies.

Yes, probably a lot less than back in heady days of the 1950’s when everyone smoked in films, even children but still, smoking is a normal image in movies.kid-smoking

As it is on TV programmes.  And on the street, loads of people are doing it on the street, mainly because they can’t smoke indoors but you still see lots and lots of people smoking.

We know it’s unhealthy but, still, it is considered and, let’s face it always will be considered normal behaviour.

When you see a smoker you think “urgh, god that’s unhealthy”   You don’t think “Urgh, god that’s not normal”

So where does this notion of “Re-normalising” smoking come from.?

If vaping is “renormalising” smoking, please tell me, when did smoking stop becoming normal?  I want an exact date and time please.  Or at least a survey.   Yes, survey some people.   Even just 10 people.

1 Question, 2 Options:

Is smoking normal:

Yes
No

Actually, I’ll save you having to do the survey – IT’S NORMAL.

So you can’t renormalise something that’s normal.

There you go Mr Mark Drakeford – there’s the sort of version of science you can get your head around.    Use that in your policy making.

 

VC

 

Please do share, comment, get in touch, send me cheques, fine wines or just think about me every so often.  I’m doing this blog because I truly believe vaping is the health revolution for the world and I want to stop the people that want to stop it.

Like superman.   Or Batman.  I’m getting my DC characters mixed up.

 

Advocacy Fatigue

Vaped Crusader Fatigue

Regular readers of this blog may have noticed that, over the last couple of weeks the blog has become, well, less regular.

It’s not because I’ve stopped vaping, it’s not because I’ve stopped caring about the millions of smokers lives that could be saved through vaping, I just haven’t felt the need to blog.

I’ve tried to pinpoint the reasons why – I’ve been extremely busy over the last few weeks with work, family life and the fact that I’ve had a part in an upcoming horror film but, throughout all of these things, I’ve still been vaping and still had many enjoyable debates about the politics of vaping as well as being an active contributor to the many vaping groups I’m a member of on Facebook.

So, to simplify things I’ve invented a completely (as far as I’m aware) made up condition – Advocacy Fatigue.

My initial drive for writing this blog was off the back of Totally Wicked’s Article 20 campaign.   I wanted to make more people – vapers, smokers and non smokers alike aware of the changes in the law regarding electronic cigarettes and that, these changes, by treating vaping the same as tobacco smoking, will be hugely detrimental to the lives of millions.     This should be as much of interest to non smokers as it is smokers and ex smokers/vapers.

I wanted to try and educate those who possibly felt that vaping was as harmful as smoking and wanted to have a more open platform than my facebook updates or tweets.

The first post I wrote had thousands of reads.   Within a couple of days it was up to around the 3k mark.  I was overjoyed.    And, in the first few weeks of starting this blog, felt a real surge in creativity, at one point writing two or three new articles every day (not every one was published)

I kind of felt like I’d done my job.    Over the past week, Totally Wicked have handed their petition in (I couldn’t attend the handing in due to work and the previously mentioned horror film – something which, to be frank, I’m exceedingly disappointed in myself for), my facebook news feed is filled with pro vaping meme’s, messages and calls to action and, to be honest, I just didn’t feel that my little blog was making any impact.

And besides, everyone else is doing their bit so, why am I needed.

But, today I’ve had a change of heart.   The battle is still not yet won.   There are still corrupt politicians passing laws that they KNOW will harm public health, there are still tobacco lobbyists having clandestine meetings to help crush this threat to their industry, there are still pharmaceutical manufacturers knowingly spreading lies about vaping to protect the sales of their own inefficient nicotine replacement products and, even if only one other person reads my blog and has their opinions changed for the better, that’s potentially another life saved.

So, Advocacy fatigue aside, the fight still needs to be fought.

The Vaped Crusader rises again!

Facebook vaping groups – a call to action

admin

I’m a member of several vaping groups on Facebook.    All have their own distinct tone – some are dedicated to the making of e-liquids, some focus on the politics, most are, purely and simply, a celebration of vaping.

Joyous comments about some obscure American premium eliquid (statistically most likely to be a custard derivative), comments or questions about a particular brand of tank, batteries, coils, wicks.   You get the picture.   Vaping stuff.

77p6ELg

And, nice though it is to read about all these wondrous things I can’t help feeling more than a little sad inside.

You see, come next year, May to be precise, those helpful people in the European union are passing a law that will, effectively, destroy EVERYTHING that people are currently posting on these vaping groups.

I see not one person posting up how great the new “Blu” they’ve bought is or how the flavour of that Nicolites Mint dances across their tongue like Wayne Sleep.

EVERYTHING.

wayne-sleep-460-195095930

It also covers the advertising of electronic cigarettes which, one can only assume, could stretch to social media, meaning facebook get pressure from the UK Government to shut down any vaping groups.

Funnily enough I posed the question in one of the non-political, more hand-checky groups.

“If the TPD comes into full effect, will it make this group illegal?”

My post was deleted

Incidentally – I get the fact that the administrators of a group may want to keep a certain tone to the group and perhaps don’t feel that vaping advocacy posts have a place but, that aside, surely it’s far more important that we all put our energies into helping to save this.

The problem is that, it’s the groups where there’s more of a focus on handchecks that NEED to be made aware of what’s going to happen.

These are the groups where the new vapers are hanging out, These are  people who haven’t yet fully absorbed themselves in vaping culture and often have no idea that Governments around the world want vaping to be stopped because it’s costing them and their tobacco and pharma buddies BILLIONS in lost tax and revenue, respectively .

In fact, only today, I commented on a post in UK Vaperz with a mention of the TPD.   One chap had no idea of the ridiculous, heavy handed and reactionary legislation that the EU are bringing in.     Another member pointed him towards the petition, now he’s signed it, he’s rightly outraged and, all being well, will spread the word.

If I’d posted a link to that in a vaping advocacy group, it would have been old news.   Preaching to the converted.

So the message needs to get out to EVERYONE in all vaping groups.

Group Admins – of all facebook vaping groups, in the UK and across the EU – Can you, even just for a short while:

1 – Message all new members to welcome them, give some very brief facts about what’s happening, pop them a link to the  petition

2 – Send a message out to all members, reminding them that vaping as we know it will be destroyed – it’s less likely to be destroyed if we all kick up a stink, include a link to the petition

3 – Along with the group rules which are often posted on the top of a group page, quick mention of the impending laws, link for the petition  (you can see a theme here with all the petition links I’m sure)

4 – Add an image that has some relation to the TPD as  your cover photo – obviously it can be as discreet as you like, I understand you’ve an image to portray but, face facts, in a year you may not even be able to have a vaping facebook group

Again, I know you may feel that this isn’t the role of a non advocacy group but, have a think, if it all goes tits up in a year’s time, will you be truly at ease with your own conscience that you did enough to help save vaping?

Theatrical Smoke Machine – OK. Vaping – NOT

Vaped Crusader Angus Young

I’ve been to two concerts this year, two rather contrasting concerts.   Take That at the Birmingham NEC/Genting Arena (yeah, I know, it was for the wife, honest!) and AC/DC at Wembley (quite simply the greatest thing I’ve ever seen in my life)

Both venues had signs stating no vaping, the NEC in particular herded us out with the smokers in a horrendous, penned in, zoo like perspex box where the smoke, despite being outside just didn’t seem to shift.

My family wanted to join me but had to walk through clouds of smoke to reach me as I was huddled into a corner, away from the smokers, feeling like an outcast.

We went back into the venue, past the big ads for E-lites and past the no vaping signs to see the techies warming up a huge theatrical smoke machine which then proceeded to billow out VG into the crowds.

Yet I couldn’t vape.   As a brief side note – I’ve since tweeted the Genting arena as they’re now called to ask where their duty of care is to their customers, seeing as they’re making vapers (mostly ex smokers) stand outside with smokers.    Unsurprisingly, no response as yet.

Wembley.   Not so much theatrical smoke.   It’s ACDC.  The ROCK is the only special effect you need.   But again, no vaping.    Wembley arena is about 50% outdoors.   It has an open roof.  An open roof that opens onto London – one of the worlds most polluted cities.    But I couldn’t vape.

Still, I did anyway.

And it thoroughly enhanced my enjoyment.   I can do without special effects.  I can’t do without vaping.  Especially when I’m about 50% outside.

In vape we trust.  It’s vape or bust.

The vaped crusader

“Smokefree” – the health authorities carrot and stick

aieRgg8XT

Despite having seen the phrase many a time, I’ve only just really started to focus on the word (if you can call it that) “Smokefree”, mainly as it’s now being quoted liberally by politicians, normally lumping it in with liberal mentions of the evils of vaping.

You’ll notice that, rather than the traditional space in between the words “Smoke” and “Free”, some health authority bod has cleverly combined the two to create an entirely new word.   A word which, to the untrained eye, states exactly the same as the two separate words “Smoke” and “Free”.    But it doesn’t.   Separately those two words describe two entirely different things.

Smoke – wispy stuff that consists of smaller particles of something that’s on fire.

Free – something that costs nowt, or Nelson Mandela for a short while.

Now, with a wave of a politically motivated word-wand, ping!  The space goes.  World, I give you “SMOKEFREE”

But, what does it mean Mr (or Mrs Politician).

It means that one day, we will have a “Smokefree” generation.

Wow, Mr (or Mrs Politician), that sounds amazing, what a beautiful, idealistic vision that will be.   All those as yet unborn babies, destined to live a life of clean air without nasty ciggies.   This HAS to be something we all support.  Plus, now it’s one word, it’s like a brand, like Persil or Tampax.   Something we trust.    Yeah, Smokefree generation, all the way.

So, it’s all neatly packaged, this vague yet easy to grasp one word manifesto.

And it’s powerful.   Even more powerful when combined with “Generation”.   It’s admitting we made mistakes, all of us previous generations and now, to put them right, for the kids of the future, we’re going to make sure they’re Smokefree.

But, here’s the sting.   It’s never going to happen.   They don’t really want it to happen.    Their job is to “try” and convince people to stop smoking.   People stop smoking, they’re out of a job.

It’s a deliberately unacheivable goal.    State an exact figure in terms of reductions, even a percentage, suddenly you’ve got something concrete to work towards. (yes I do realise they have targets for reductions but, it’s the smokefree bit in particular I feel compelled to gripe about)

But Smokefree generation is nothing but a dangling carrot, a nicely presented buzzphrase to continue to leach cash from government funds to invest in failed smoking reduction programs.  Besides, the subtext is not for a generation that is Smoke Free but one that has got there through the direct involvement of Smokefree.

The people have spoken – we prefer vaping, you should be happy, we’re helping you get us “Smokefree”

A sensibly worded no vaping sign

No-Vaping

So, I popped into my local Sainsburys (a UK supermarket, for anyone not familiar with UK supermarkets) today.   It’s not a place I visit on a particularly regular basis but, around 5pm every day, they’re especially good for discounting all of the food that’s up to it’s sell by day date (a date that stuff cannot be sold after, for anyone not familiar with sell by dates).

I get cheaper food – always good, and the added excitement of having my evening meal chosen by the means of scientifically proven decomposition rates for a variety of foodstuffs.   I don’t get out much.  This kind of thing brings me fun.

Anyway, onto the point in question – as this is a vaping blog and, in essence should have nothing to do with my dull trips to buy rotting food.    The no vaping sign on the front door of the supermarket.

I always make a point of looking out for no vaping signs.  They’re becoming scarily common in the UK and, typically scream out, over the course of a few small words, how little knowledge the person that wrote the sign has about vaping.

Often you’ll see things like

“The smoking of electronic cigarettes is not permitted”

Well, thank god for that.  You try setting fire to those things, you’ll lose your face, and most of the Krispy Kreme display.

Or

“NO SMOKING – this includes electronic cigarettes”

How?  that’s like saying

“No SMOKING – this includes drinking”

But, to be fair to the people of Sainsbury’s – firstly, I’ve no problem with no vaping in a supermarket as such.  Yes, the more educated amongst us no there’s no “passive vaping”, know “what’s in them” and all the rest of it but, in a place of food, any substance that can be detected by your senses is likely to cause upset so, fair enough.

And secondly, the sign itself was worded to show some element of understanding.

“Our store policy does not permit the use of electronic cigarettes in store”

They’re taking responsibility for the decision – it’s THEIR store policy.  We can then question that all we like, it’s their policy, it’s a commercial decision, they’re a business.   OK.

Yes, we know the drivers behind this have most likely come from tabloid lies and yes we could argue that any kind of indoor vaping ban is a bad thing – after all, it’s only likely to lead to more.

But at least their sign doesn’t make them look like complete tools.

Scary, scary smoke

178836__ghost-hand-smoke-lights-creepy-horror-fear-ghost-hand-smoke-lights-spooky-horror-fear_p

“Electronic Cigarettes” (I have to put the term in speech marks as I’m becoming sick of hearing it – carries too many negative connotations) have entered our society at a very sensitive time.

After years of campaigning, in 2007 the anti smoking pesterers (yes that is a word, despite wordpress underlining it and suggesting otherwise), finally got their way and had smoking banned indoors in the UK.

It took a while for a good portion of the population (the smokers) to get used to it, eventually most people, even most smokers warmed to the idea and now it would seem odd to walk into a pub and see people chugging away on a Benson.

For a number of years, the non smokers became increasingly used to their clean, smoke free lives.  Enjoying a pint without the ghastly spectre of filthy, cancerous cigarette smoke enveloping them, despite then walking outside the pub and being bathed in filthy, cancerous exhaust fumes.   But they’re ok with those..  Cancerous exhaust fumes help get their kids to school.   Plus you can’t really see them.

Fast forward to the year Marty McFly first rode a hoverboard and many of the former smokers are now – fortunately – vapers.  Pleased, happy vapers that can go back to many of the old pleasures of enjoying smoking with a pint, knowing it’s legal and, according to widely publicised research which is never read by anyone arguing for indoor vaping bans, completely harmless to those around them.

But some of the non smokers were getting annoyed.   Initially the backlash was purely from an angle of people thinking you were smoking indoors.  The 1st gen devices mostly looked like cigarettes and, naturally, due to the lack of knowledge about them, many thought you were smoking.

Now though, it’s got far worse.  The scare stories and outright lies that have been printed and submitted online have generated a completely unfounded fear for the vapour.   People are now believing that they contain 10x more cancer causing chemicals than traditional cigarettes.

As a result, premises are posting up ridiculous no vaping signs, concert venues (including wembley which is about 70% open roof) are banning them, the whole of bloody wales is looking likely to ban them indoors.   And why?

  • Because it looks like smoking
  • Because it will encourage non smokers to take up the habit
  • Because it undermines the clean air policy we’ve put in place since the indoor smoking ban
  • Because there’s a Y in the day
  • Because of the kids, these mysterious, non existent, virtuous, sinless children that WE MUST PROTECT

All of these reasons, including the last two have been completely disproven.    And all of these reasons have been used by Mark Drakeford as part of the bill to ban vaping indoors in Wales.

We need research to get out there, to shove it in peoples faces, to harass MP’s, to get on radio shows, tv, anything.   So people can be educated and informed, not scared.    The more public opinion grows against vaping, the worse the situation is going to get, particularly when this ignorance is reinforced by politicians passing completely unjust and harmful legislation.

The politicians need educating more than anyone!

Or, as seems to be the case, if they’re being presented with the evidence and choosing to ignore it, have some of them got a different – possibly financially motivated – agenda?