What to Know
- New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney on Wednesday says he will propose a plan to phase out all electronic smoking products
- His comment comes after an outbreak of a vaping-related lung disease sickened hundreds and killed at least six people
- Three vaping related illnesses have been confirmed so far in the state by health officials and 19 others are still under investigation
As states across the nation begin to crack down on certain types of e-cigarettes amid recent reports of an outbreak of a mysterious lung disease tied to vaping, state officials in New Jersey have proposed a ban on all electronic smoking products.
New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney on Wednesday applauded Democratic Sen. Shirley Turner and Sen. Joe Vitale for introducing new bills that would prohibit the sale of flavored e-cigarettes but Sweeney says they don't go far enough.
"These initiatives could be the first steps towards a total ban on the sale of all vaping products, including e-cigarettes. I will propose a plan to phase out the sale of all vaping products over the next few years," Sweeney said in a statement.
If the plan passes the State Assembly, the Senate and Gov. Phil Murphy, who says he's already considering the issue, New Jersey would be come the first state to ban all electronic smoking devices and products.
Three vaping related illnesses have been confirmed so far in the state by health officials and 19 others are still under investigation.
Sweeney's comments come as the Trump administration prepares to ban flavored e-cigarettes as federal health officials say lung disease has sickened hundreds and killed at least six people.
The Food and Drug Administration is already finalizing its guidance to remove all non-tobacco flavors of e-cigarettes, including mint and menthol, from the market within 30 days. Companies might be able to reintroduce their flavors at a later date, so long as they submit a formal application and receive approval from the FDA.
A spokesperson for Juul, the leading brand of e-cigarettes, told CNBC on Wednesday, “We strongly agree with the need for aggressive category-wide action on flavored products. We will fully comply with the final FDA policy when effective.”
The CDC is investigating more than 450 cases of lung disease officials suspect were caused by vaping.
"There is an urgency here with the health and safety – and even the lives – of young people at risk,” said Sweeney.