The DOT Has Banned E-Cigarette Use On All US Commercial Flights
The Department of Transportation has officially banned the use of electronic cigarettes on all U.S. commercial flights.
Anthony Foxx, the Secretary of Transportation announced the new regulation today, Wednesday, stating that the decision to implement the rule is their effort to prevent passengers from being exposed to e-cigarette vapor.
“This final rule is important because it protects airline passengers from unwanted exposure to aerosol fumes that occur when electronic cigarettes are used onboard airplanes,” Foxx stated.
The new rule is applicable to all flights in and out of the United States, to both domestic and international airlines and includes charter (unscheduled) flights and foreign air carriers that require a flight attendant.
With the popularity of vapor products soaring and their presence among flights becoming more common, it was a no brainer that eventually the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) felt the need to ban e-cigs from checked luggage. It wasn’t until October 2015 that this suggestion was adopted by the DOT.
But this regulation only addressed the concern of device and battery safety; it was never made clear whether vaping was prohibited on a flight.
With Wednesday’s announcement, the DOT sought to eliminate any confusion over whether previous rules applied to the use of e-cigs. They also made it clear that it was applicable to all forms of vapor products, including cigalikes, vape pens and personal vaporizers. The ban does not include the use of nebulizers, a medically approved aerosolizing device.
The regulation stated: “We recognize that the industry has generally banned the use of electronic cigarettes on flights…” but added “…we believe that without a clear, uniform regulation, some carriers may feel free to adopt policies that allow the use of e-cigarettes onboard aircrafts.”