Feds Ban E-Cigs on Planes Because They Look Like Cigarettes

E-cigarette / AP
March 2, 2016

The federal government has banned the use of electronic cigarettes on airplanes, saying they took a "practical approach" of banning the legal product because they can look like cigarettes.

The Hill reported:

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) finalized a rule Wednesday banning electronic cigarettes on all commercial flights.

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said the final rule applies to all flights with both national and foreign airline carriers traveling to and from the U.S.

"This final rule is important because it protects airline passengers from unwanted exposure to aerosol fumes that occur when electronic cigarettes are used onboard airplanes," Foxx said in a news release. "The Department took a practical approach to eliminate any confusion between tobacco cigarettes and e-cigarettes by applying the same restrictions to both."

The rule applies to all commercial and charter flights, and "explicitly bans the use of electronic cigarettes in all forms, including but not limited to electronic cigars, pipes, and devices designed to look like everyday products such as pens," the department said.

The department went ahead with the bad despite its admission that "further study" is needed on e-cigarettes, which have been found to be one of the most effective smoking cessation tools.