Lewis Diuguid

E-cigarettes need to be regulated

A new congressional report shows that this country has a crying need to regulate electronic cigarettes.

The report, written by the staffs of Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa, Rep. Henry Waxman of California and others, points to flavors and marketing that may attract young e-cigarette users. Right now there are no age restrictions on e-cigarettes or uniform warning labels with cautions about the health effects of the devices.

The battery-powered e-cigarettes heat a liquid nicotine solution, creating a vapor that is inhaled. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to set product regulations for e-cigarette soon.

In the Missouri General Assembly, the House gave first-round approval to a bill that bars people under age 18 from buying e-cigarettes and other devices. It is a positive step toward a badly needed law, which the rest of the country should adopt.