Electronic Cigarettes

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Bill would define e-cigarettes as tobacco products in Michigan

Efforts to keep electronic cigarettes out of the hands of minors continue this week in Lansing. A state House panel will hold a hearing Tuesday morning on legislation that would make it illegal to sell e-cigarettes to minors.

The smokeless devices produce a nicotine-laced vapor, but do not contain any actual tobacco. The bipartisan bill would define e-cigarettes as tobacco products. But it would also exempt them from the state's tobacco tax.

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State legislators and the federal government are moving toward regulation of electronic cigarettes, and a local health expert says it's important to know the potential dangers of "vaping".

E-cigarettes heat up liquid nicotine to create the vapor that's inhaled. 

University of Michigan dietician Sue Ryskamp says liquid nicotine can be harmful.

"If it comes out too quickly it can result in acute nicotine toxicity, from either the direct skin contact, eye exposure, ingestion or inhalation," Ryskamp says.

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State Senate votes to ban e-cigarette sales to minors

It could soon be illegal to sell electronic cigarettes to children in Michigan. The state Senate unanimously passed legislation Thursday meant to keep the smokeless devices out of the hands of minors. 

So-called "e-cigarettes" deliver a nicotine-laced vapor, but don't contain tobacco. That means the state cannot currently regulate them along with regular cigarettes and other tobacco products.