A 1-year-old child in New York died last week after ingesting liquid nicotine, the chemical ingredient used in increasingly-popular e-cigarettes.
Police say the child was found unresponsive after an accidental exposure to the chemical. The Fort Plain, New York Police Department says the death was a “tragic accident" but no foul-play was involved.
According to ABC, the child may have been the first to ever die from from liquid nicotine.
Doctors say deaths like this one could continue to spike as more people use e-cigarettes. Packages for liquid nicotine, which often comes in candy flavors like cotton candy or sour apple, are far to easy for children to open, experts say.
"They’re not that difficult to get into,” said Dr. Donna Seger, Director of Poison Control at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. “The issue is once the exposure occurs, it could be bad.”
The American Association of Poison Control centers also released a statement in light of the death.
"One teaspoon of liquid nicotine could be lethal to a child, and smaller amounts can cause severe illness, often requiring trips to the emergency department," the center said. "Despite the dangers these products pose to children, there are currently no standards set in place that require child-proof packaging."
As ABC notes, child exposures to liquid nicotine have surged in recent years with the increase in popularity of e-cigarettes. Just 271 dangerous exposures were reported in 2011. In 2013, that number jumped to 1,543 exposures. 3,638 exposures have been reported so far in 2014.