An e-cigarette battery exploded inside a woman’s purse at a New Jersey mall, causing panic among her fellow shoppers on the anniversary of 9/11.
Surveillance footage from the Sunglass Hut store in Freehold Raceway Mall showed thick, black smoke emanating from the woman’s Louis Vuitton bag and everyone’s shocked reactions as a lithium battery from her e-cigarette exploded, NBC 4 New York reported.
“Terrifying, scary. It sounded like a gunshot. It sounded like a bomb went off,” Mara McInerney, the owner of the handbag, said to NBC 4 New York. “It was 9/11. I thought someone had put something in my bag.”
McInerney said she dumped the contents of her purse on the floor before discovering the charred remains of the e-cigarette and melted holes in her $1,900 Louis Vuitton Neverfull MM tote that she purchased last November.
There have been several incidents of vaporized e-cigarettes blowing up across the country this year.
McInerney said she always stores her e-cigarette in the pocket of her handbag, but was thankful her four-year-old daughter had not reached into her purse at the time it blew up.
“Just knowing that I have my child and my bag in the back seat; my daughter is in the car seat next to it. It’s scary and it could happen to anyone,” McInerney said to News 12 New Jersey.
No one was injured in the explosion.