L.A. Council Committee Votes to Move E-Cigarette Ban Forward

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A Los Angeles City Council committee on Monday voted to advance a controversial ban on “vaping” in areas of the city where tobacco smoking is banned.

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A man exhales vapors from an E-cigarette in this file photo. (Credit: KTLA)

Dozens of people on both sides of Los Angeles’ potential ban attended the meeting of the Arts, Parks, Health, Aging, and River Committee’s discussion of a proposed stricter ban on e-cigarettes in public.

“This is something that will ensure public safety for people who don’t necessarily want to be around vapors from e-cigarettes,” said Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, one of the authors of a motion to create a city ordinance banning vaping.

O’Farrell called the committee’s approval of the motion a “significant step toward a healthier Los Angeles.”

Those in favor of public bans said more studies were needed to understand the potential dangers of e-cigarette use, especially with regard to second-hand smoke. But they warned that it could take years for that research to be completed, and said action was needed in the meantime.

E-cigarette industry leaders said banning their product may lead smokers to return to tobacco cigarettes, which are already known to be dangerous.

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that the full City Council was weighing a proposed ban on Monday. The post has been updated to reflect the matter is before a committee.