A toddler from New York is the first child reported to die from liquid nicotine poisoning in the United States. The report has concerned health officials, as e-cigarettes continue to grow in popularity.
The one-year-old child died after ingesting liquid nitrogen at a home in Fort Plain, New York last week. The child was found unresponsive and rushed to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to ABC News.
Police issued a statement that they believe the death was a “tragic accident,” although they did not say if the liquid nicotine was associated with an e-cigarette. E-cigs are portable vaporizers designed to dispense liquid nicotine solutions known as e-Liquid.
In a statement, Fort Plain police Sgt Austin Ryan said the child drank from a glass bottle containing the nicotine that did not have a child-proof cap, the Independent reported.
The child’s death is the first death related to liquid nicotine since 2012, when a man injected himself with nicotine, according to the Daily Mail.
[quote text_size=”small” author=”– American Association of Poison Control Centers”]
One teaspoon of liquid nicotine could be lethal to a child, and smaller amounts can cause severe illness, often requiring trips to the emergency room. Despite the dangers these products pose to children, there are currently no standards set in place that require child-proof packaging.
The death has prompted backlash in New York. The local assembly and senate have already passed a bill that would require child-resistant containers on liquid nitrogen. Among the concerns is the fact that many e-cigarette refills are marketed in a similar manner as sweets, which inadvertently makes them more attractive to children.
In November, the American Association of Poison Control Centers said the number of dangerous “exposures” to liquid nitrogen has skyrocketed over the last few years with 3,638 exposures reported as of November 30. An exposure to liquid nitrogen means the substance was ingested, inhaled or absorbed through the skin. This is more than double the 1,543 dangerous exposures reported last year.