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Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes

HB 645 passed by the 2006 New Hampshire Legislature and signed into law May 31, 2006 by Governor John Lynch requires all cigarettes sold or offered for sale in New Hampshire to meet the same criteria for reduced ignition propensity cigarettes as in New York State. This law goes in to effect October 1, 2007.

The new law is designed to limit the risk that cigarettes will ignite upholstered furniture, mattresses, household furnishings or other combustible material and result in fewer fire deaths, injuries and property loss from fires caused by cigarettes. Smoking materials were the leading cause of fire deaths in Vermont (1995-2004) with 25% of the fire deaths. This is similar to the national average for fire deaths from smoking materials that varies between 22% and 26% according to statistics from the National Fire Protection Association. Smoking materials were the third leading cause of fire related injuries nationwide.

The newly designed cigarettes are designed to stop burning when left unattended, but otherwise they have the same characteristics as other cigarettes. The cost of the fire safe cigarettes to consumers has not changed and the law contains provisions for stores to sell their existing inventory of cigarettes (RSA 339-F:8 II).

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