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According to an article which appeared recently in the online version of The Boston Globe, by Kay Lazar, Boston’s Health Commission voted 5 to 1 to ban the use of electronic cigarettes in public places.

The electronic cigarettes, often used to help veteran smokers quit, provide some nicotine in the form of a vapor to their users. In addition to electronic cigarettes, Boston’s Health Commission also added the sale of individual cigars to their list of prohibited items for sale, as they have become attractive to teen smokers. Margaret Reid of the Health Commission vowed, “Cheap cigars aren’t going to be cheap anymore, and unregulated nicotine products won’t be sold to kids.” The ruling also included cigarillos, a small and sometimes flavored cigar. The ruling immediately “doubles fines for retailers in violation of the city’s tobacco control regulations,” raising the bar from $100 for the first offense and $400 for the fourth offense in 12 months, to $200 for the first offense and $800 for the fourth offense in 24 months.

In Boston, retailers, such as convenience stores, that desire to sell electronic cigarettes will have to apply for a permit to do so; and when they receive a permit to sell them, the products will be placed behind the counters and not sold to anyone under the age of 18 years. The move to ban electronic cigarettes seems to be picking up steam as fourteen other communities in Massachusetts have previously regulated their sale.

An unusual bit about this ban is that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hasn’t compiled a lot of data about the effects of the use electronic cigarettes, so the FDA has not weighed in formally on the issue. Given recent budget controversies, perhaps the FDA is waiting to confirm funding in the coming year.


  1. Gravatar for Truckie D

    Interesting post Greg.

    I wonder what justification they used for banning them, since the FDA hasn't officially said anything yet.

    I switched from tobacco cigarettes to an e-cig earlier this year. In theory, (according to the manufacturers) the exhaled component is basically just water vapor, so banning water vapor would seem to be a little overboard.

    On the other hand, I haven't seen any good research done yet on e-cigs as a whole. As usual there are those on both sides of the issue trumpeting their point of view, without a whole lot in the way of facts either way.

    Personally, I think we should all wait for the official FDA results.


  2. Gravatar for alex

    Think I can be of some help here, my dad used electronic cigarettes to quit smoking, and as an interested Medicinal Chemistry Masters student i did some research into their contents.

    I direct you to this interesting study, which demonstrates that e-cigarettes are at least 1000 times less harmful than tobacco cigarettes. a study, you may note, carried out (somewhat amusingly) by your own university.

    The amazingly affective campaign to de-normailze tobacco use has been accompanied by a lack of education into what the actually harmful components of tobacco are; i.e. not nicotine. in itself it is less harmful than caffeine, and i cant see coffee being banned anytime soon.

    fact is neither big tobacco nor the federal government are in favour of e-cigs as they hit them where it hurts, THEIR WALLETS. and to this end the government will force nicotine addicts back to killing themselves with tobacco rather than allow them to quit with e-cigs, rather than compromize lucrative tobacco tax revenues.

  3. Gravatar for Tripp Brown

    With the FDA's poor track record, I wouldn't be looking to them for guidance on establishing policies concerning electronic cigarettes. Kids are largely uninterested in them as well.

  4. Gravatar for Electricman

    There is no safe form of tobacco use. All forms contain nicotine and cause addiction and health problems

    Nicotine dependence is an addiction to tobacco products caused by the drug nicotine.

    Just like the nicotine scare that's running around ecf? How long before someone is killed from this poison

    Nicotine labeled.....Nicotine determined

    100 mg....48 mg

    100 mg....121 mg

    100 mg....272 mg

    48 mg....78 mg

    36 mg....51 mg

    48 mg....59 mg

    100 mg....98 mg

    A product that is testing at at 272 mg/ml and labeled at 100 mg/ml is more than dangerous, it could be deadly.

    They hide behind "harm reduction " sites like (Consumer Addicts Should Advocate Addiction) so it looks like it's safe to be addicted to nicotine so they can addict for people..... Therefore more money for them to make

    kids are using prepaid credit cards and personal bank accounts to sustain their NicFits. There's much provided evidence of multiple sales to underage children of the substance Nicotine. These illegal sales are increasing from more than one internet vendor.

    "These sellers are not accounting for any ones safety especially the kids." They have no way of proving the ages of buyers when accepting any purchases "Via the internet" for Nicotine eJuice or any drug delivery devices associated with it.

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