Jepsen Targets Electronic Cigarettes Sales to Minors

Sep 25, 2013

Credit Michael Dorausch / Creative Commons

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen, together with more than 35 attorneys general from other states, wants the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to regulate the advertising and sale of electronic cigarettes to minors. There are currently no federal age restrictions on the sale of e-cigarrettes, which have become very popular, very quickly.

E-cigarettes are battery-operated. They heat liquid nicotine from tobacco plants into a vapor that is inhaled by the user, and are available in fruit and candy flavors. Jepsen said that while some marketing claims imply that e-cigarettes are a safe alternative to smoking, they haven't been adequately studied.

A survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that the percentage of young people who have tried e-cigarettes roughly doubled between 2011 and 2012. There are estimates that nearly 1.8 million middle and high school students tried e-cigarettes last year.

The video below demonstrates in detail how an e-cigarette works, and what it looks like inside.