San Francisco approves e-cigarette regulations

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco is banning the use of electronic cigarettes at bars, restaurants and businesses.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/1fHpwOY ) that the city's Board of Supervisors voted unanimously on Tuesday to treat electronic cigarettes like regular, combustible cigarettes. In addition to prohibiting their use in most public places, that means sellers will have to secure a special permit and electronic cigarettes can't be sold at pharmacies and other businesses where tobacco sales are banned.

Supervisor Eric Mar said the goal is to limit children's use of the nicotine product. Critics say the long-term health effects of electronic cigarettes are not known.

Cynthia Cabrera, executive director of the Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association, said the city is stigmatizing the use of electronic cigarettes.

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Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, http://www.sfgate.com