E cigarette
The Department of Transportation has already said electronic cigarettes are banned from use on planes and is making it official. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

The U.S. Department of Transportation has called for electronic cigarettes to be banned from airplanes. The DOT is requesting use of the devices be prohibited as vapor from the devices can be irritating to some passengers.

Ban already practiced; officials want legal validation

The Department of Transportation, according to USA Today, is asking for a ban on using electronic cigarettes, also called e-cigarettes, vapor cigarettes or e-cigs, while flying. The DOT entered its request for a ban into the Federal Register, the official journal of the United States government. Several airlines already don’t allow passengers to use electronic cigarettes aboard airplanes.

According to CNN, at least one person has gotten in trouble for using an electronic cigarette aboard a plane. In July, a man was arrested after refusing to stop using his e-cigarette aboard a Southwest Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City. The Department of Transportation, according to the Huffington Post, said in February that the devices couldn’t be used on airplanes and were going to officially be banned by law later in the year.

Irritating vapors at center of proposed ban

The issue the DOT has with the devices being used in-flight is that the “smoke” produced by the devices can be irritating to some people’s eyes and upper respiratory system, according to USA Today. The “smoke” isn’t actually smoke but rather a vapor.

Electronic cigarettes work by vaporizing a liquid that contains nicotine, flavoring agents, water and propylene glycol. The user inhales the vapor and exhales just as with an actual cigarette. Propylene glycol, according to Wikipedia, is a relatively innocuous liquid often used in shampoos, conditioners, hand sanitizers, soaps, toothpaste and deodorants, among a lot of other uses.

Part of the problem, according to the Los Angeles Times, is that many passengers have confused the vapor with actual cigarette smoke and called in flight attendants. The Navy has already banned the devices on submarines, according to the Seattle Post Intelligencer. Using e-cigs is also banned aboard Amtrak trains.

Lesser of evils

Electronic cigarettes first became widely available in the United States in 2006, according to the Seattle P.I. However, there has been resistance to them because long-term effects of use have not been determined. The Food and Drug Administration is concerned about making them widely available without knowing what detrimental effects they might have.

There is some evidence that electronic cigarettes might help people give up traditional ones. According to Consumer Reports, a recently released study in the International Journal of Clinical Practice found that out of more than 100 e-cig users interviewed, 78 percent avoided any tobacco use for the 30 days previous to the interview. Nearly 75 percent began using them to quit smoking and almost two-thirds had previously tried an FDA-approved smoking cessation aid without success. The English government, according to The Guardian, recently suggested smokers try e-cigs if it would help them kick the habit.


USA Today: http://travel.usatoday.com/flights/story/2011-09-14/DOT-proposes-ban-on-electronic-cigarettes-on-planes/50404720/1

CNN: http://www.cnn.com/2011/09/15/travel/electronic-cigarettes-ban/

Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/11/electronic-cigarettes-ban_n_821828.html

Wikipedia on propylene glycol: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propylene_glycol

Los Angeles Times: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-electronic-cigarette-20110915,0,7376977.story

Seattle Post Intelligencer: http://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/US-ban-proposed-on-electronic-cigarettes-on-planes-2170122.php

Consumer Reports: http://news.consumerreports.org/health/2011/09/popularity-of-e-cigarettes-grows-but-little-still-known-about-them.html

The Guardian:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/sep/14/smokeless-nicotine-cigarettes-government

Post By bryanh (1,420 Posts)


Do you have a fantastic idea related to this article, but just don't have the money you need to start your own company or side-business? Get the loans you need from https://personalmoneynetwork.com to help get your new company underway, from the small loan professionals at PersonalMoneyNetwork.

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

Pacific Gas and Electric Co., a northern California utility, has agreed to pay $70 million to the California town of San Bruno for a pipeline explosion that killed eight people in 2010. Company says it’s remorseful The San Francisco-based power company’s president, Chris Johns, released a statement Monday, saying PG&E is sorry and eager to […]

Judge stabbed and deputy shot in Washington courthouse

Grays Harbor County Courthouse

Following a standoff in a Washington state county courtroom Friday, a man reportedly escaped after shooting a sheriff’s deputy in the shoulder and stabbing a judge in the neck. The man is still at large. Treachery among the tree farms The incident occurred Friday afternoon in the western Washington town of Montesano, which bills itself […]

Microraptor was one flashy little dinosaur

Microraptor fossil

A team of Chinese and American scientists have found that Microraptor, a small four winged dinosaur that went extinct about 130 million years ago, was likely black and almost certainly had glossy, iridescent feathers. Until now, the coloring of extinct creatures was a matter of pure speculation. That may no longer be the case. The […]

Autocorrected message leads to school lockdown

Homage to the Sun

Adjacent schools in Georgia were locked down for two hours Wednesday after a text message reportedly warned of a “gunman” on campus. Later, it was learned that the message was the result of a smartphone autocorrect function, attempting to “fix” the misspelled slang word “gunna.” A series of mixups A series of mixups led to […]