San Francisco will become the first American city to ban e-cigarettes. The city's board of supervisors voted in favour of the ban on Tuesday.
The ordinance states "no person shall sell or distribute an electronic cigarette to a person in San Francisco" unless that product has undergone premarket review by the US Food and Drug Administration. To date, none have.
This includes sales in physical stores, as well as products shipped to a San Francisco address. The ordinance applies to any tobacco flavoured products as well as e-cigarettes. The measure does not ban the use of vapes by people over the age of 21.
"This is a decisive step to help prevent another generation of San Francisco children from becoming addicted to nicotine," City Attorney Dennis Herrera said in a statement, following the vote:
"I support the legislation authored by City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Supervisor Shamann Walton to suspend the sale of e-cigarettes in San Francisco until the Food and Drug Administration concludes a review of the impacts of vaping on public health," said Breed. "There is so much we don't know about the health impacts of these products, but we do know that e-cigarette companies are targeting our kids in their advertising and getting them hooked on addictive nicotine products. We need to take action to protect the health of San Francisco's youth and prevent the next generation of San Franciscans from becoming addicted to these products."
After the ordinance is signed, it is 30 days before it comes into effect as policy.