Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz Tuesday proposed banning electronic cigarette devices and products from being sold throughout the city.
The ban would put a halt on sales until vaping products are approved by the federal government and deemed safe. This is important considering the FDA and CDC have not identified the cause or causes of the lung injuries when the only commonality among all cases is that patients report the use of e-cigarette, or vaping products.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously last week to adopt an ordinance banning flavored tobacco products, including menthol, and to call on Gov. Gavin Newsom to pass a statewide ban on vaping.
“The reports of illness and death caused by unregulated vaping devices is a public health crisis,” Koretz’s motion says. “The city of Los Angeles is not content to wait and do nothing as the numbers of illnesses and even deaths associated with unregulated vaping devices increases daily.”
As of Oct. 1, there had been more than 1,000 reports of vaping-related illnesses throughout the country and eight deaths associated with vaping nationwide, one of which occurred in Los Angeles County, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
All patients reported using e-cigarette, or vaping, products. Most patients reported a history of using THC-containing products or cannabis.
This outbreak might have more than one cause, and many different substances and product sources are still under investigation. The specific chemical exposure(s) causing lung injuries associated with e-cigarette product use, or vaping, remains unknown at this time.
How can local and state legislatures, ban products, when it is still unknown what specific exposures are causing these injuries?