Exploding vape pen may have caused deadly Florida house fire, investigators say

A deadly fire in Historic Old Northeast St. Petersburg possibly was caused by an exploding vape pen, according to St. Pete Fire Rescue.

The fire happened around 9 a. m. Saturday on the second floor of the two-story home.

Emergency crews said they there were no flames or smoke visible when they arrived, but inside they found heavy smoking and the body of 38 -year-old Tallmadge D’Elia.

St. Pete Fire Rescue says D’Elia had severe facial injuries, believed to be a result of his vape pen explosion near his face.

They think that detonation also caused the fire.

Firefighters warn those who use vape pens and e-cigarettes to follow the device’s instructions for use carefully.

“We do have cases where the vape pens have exploded and they have caused fires. That’s one of the reasons we don’t allow them at special events or any type of indoor facilities, merely because they are dangerous and hazardous, ” explained Deputy Marshal Steven Lawrence.

The Pinellas County Coroner will determine D’Elia’s official cause of death.

This story first is available on Fox 13.

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