Disposable vapes found to contain formaldehyde and lead, users inhaling metals

A shocking new report has discovered disposable vapes contain dangerous chemicals, such as metals including lead and formaldehyde.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk ordered the lab tests over mounting concerns “lolly” flavoured vapes were appealing to children.

Flavours tested included Strawberry Watermelon Ice, Cherry Ice, Summer Breeze and Apple Surge.

“I asked the Health and Environment Committee to look at this issue and these results are staggering,” the Premier said on Saturday.

“There are people who might think vaping is safer than smoking or, indeed, harmless.

“These test results should make those people think again.”

Camera IconThe Premier said the results were ‘staggering’. Dan Peled / NCA NewsWire Credit: Supplied

Queensland’s Health and Environment Committee tested the chemical composition of 17 e-liquid samples currently available for purchase in the state.

Results revealed all of the samples contained formaldehyde and acetaldehyde, both carbonyl compounds, while the former is classified as a group one human carcinogen.

Agents that fall into this category are classified as having the potential to cause cancer in humans.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA-NewsWire Photos, JANUARY 18, 2023. A leading public health expert has slammed retailers' calls for vapes containing nicotine to be sold from behind the counter as usage continues to rise. A vape store is pictured in the CBD of Melbourne. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Ian Currie
Camera IconIt is currently illegal to buy nicotine vapes in Queensland without a prescription from anywhere but a pharmacy. NCA NewsWire / Ian Currie Credit: Supplied

Other substances found in all of the tested samples included Volatile Organic Compounds, which are typically used in the manufacture of paints and pharmaceuticals.

Arsenic and zinc were also found to be present in all of the e-liquids, while other heavy metals found included lead, mercury, nickel, chromium, aluminium, iron, barium, manganese, copper, strontium and vanadium.

Queensland’s Health Minister Shannon Fentiman described the results as “confronting”.

“We know vapes are becoming more popular, especially with younger people, and these results make it clear that what is inside them is extremely dangerous,” she said.

“This week, our government passed a bill to strengthen controls on smoking and vaping, including harsher penalties for anyone selling or storing illegal tobacco.”

All of the samples tesetd contained at least two carbonyl compounds, formaldehyde and acetaldehyde. Picture: Instagram
Camera IconAll of the samples tested contained at least two carbonyl compounds, formaldehyde and acetaldehyde. Instagram Credit: Supplied

It is currently illegal in Queensland to purchase vaping devices containing nicotine without a prescription from anywhere but a pharmacy.

This comes after a Brisbane convenience store was fined more than $88,000 earlier this month for illegally selling 45,000 vapes with nicotine.

The federal government also announced a crack down on the importation and sale of disposable vaping products earlier this month.

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA, Newswire Photos. MAY 23, 2023: Minister for Health and Aged Care Mark Butler during Question Time at Parliament House in Canberra. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Camera IconThe federal government announced a crackdown on vaping products earlier this month. NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman Credit: Supplied

Health Minister Mark Butler announced $737m in this year’s budget would be put towards funding measures to intervene in tobacco and vaping use in Australia.

“Vaping is creating a whole new generation of nicotine dependency in our community,” he said.

“It poses a major threat to Australia’s success in tobacco control and the Albanese government is not going to stand by and let this happen.”

This comes after a Perth man was hospitalised with horrific third-degree burns to seven per cent of his body after a disposable vape exploded in his pocket.

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