It’s the first I’ve heard, but apparently, electronic cigarettes have been sold for a while. These objects look like a cigarette, but they are made of metal, usually stainless steel and wrapped like a cigarette. Inside is a cartridge containing liquid nicotine. When it is heated, users can inhale the vaporised droplets and breath out a mist. It is heated using batteries. These cigarettes became popular as a way to circumvent the No Smoking rules. Initially sold on the internet, they are now being seeing on street markets and retailers.
Though it may sound like a good idea, there are some concerns. Reports state that the amount of nicotine present is ‘highly toxic’ and its use has been banned in Australia. Opponents also point out that young children can accidentally swallow the cartridges, which would be extremely dangerous. The director of the company that manufactures the cigarettes has said that tests done on mice have shown that the product is safe, but no human studies have been done. The other big concern is that the product is made in China, where standards are not good.
Perhaps the most surprising thing is that there is no government regulation on the sale of these cigarettes. Anyone can buy them. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance, yet because it is not an illegal drug, per se, there are no rules against its use. If the government restricts the use of regular cigarettes, it should do so with these electronic ones as well. It is a bad habit and nicotine does have negative effects. Furthermore, they should investigate these legitimate concerns before they can allow it to be sold to the public.