The Food and Drug Administration's "deeming regulation," imposing restrictions on e-cigarettes, vape pens, as well as cigars and pipe tobacco, contains several important restrictions on tobacco retailers that take effect August 8. NATSO has updated its "E-Cigarette Compliance Guide" for travel plaza retailers, which is available to members by clicking here.
Specifically, the provisions in question restrict retailers' ability to sell newly regulated products to individuals under the age of 18; require retailers to check the i.d. of everyone under the age of 27 seeking to purchase such products; and restrict retailers' ability to offer free samples of such products and sell such products in vending machines.
The Food and Drug Administration is working with states to conduct undercover "sting" operations testing retailers' compliance with these provisions. NATSO has provided an overview of how travel plaza operators may respond to alleged violations of tobacco restrictions, which is available here.
Relatedly, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently issued a safety advisory alerting owners and operators of commercial motor vehicles about the safety risks associated with possessing and using battery-powered electronic smoking devices in their vehicles. Truck drivers are statistically more than two times more likely than the rest of the population. Many smokers have turned to these smoking alternatives as a substitute for traditional cigarettes.
FMCSA's warning last week said that "The use of battery-powered portable electronic smoking devices has resulted in incidents including explosions, serious personal injuries, and fires....Motor carriers and drivers should be cognizant of the risks associated with these devices and exercise good judgment and appropriate discretion in their possession, storage, and charging or use on, around, or while operating a commercial motor vehicle."
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