New FDA Regulations Might Pass for E-Cigarettes - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New FDA Regulations Might Pass for E-Cigarettes

Posted: Updated: - E-Cigarettes are the smokeless alternative to tobacco, but the federal government has no idea what they contain, or whether they are dangerous.

That is all about to change. The Food and Drug Administration will announce Thursday it wants to regulate e-cigarettes.

E-cigarettes are made of metal or plastic tubes that use nicotine, water, and other materials to create a flavored mist and are an alternative to traditional cigarettes.

The use of e-cigarettes is called "vaping" and has taken off with sales hitting an estimated $2 billion in 2013. An e-cigarette product ranges from $10.00 to $120.00, depending on the quality of the product.

The FDA wants hundreds of e-cigarette manufacturers to register with the organization so scientists can determine if they're a health hazard, but people in the industry say they are safe.

"We are absolutely 100 percent competing against the deadliest product on a planet - which is conventional tobacco cigarettes," said Ray Story from Tobacco Vapor E-Cigarette Association.

E-cigs come in flavors like strawberry and mint, and anti-smoking advocates fear they are being marketed to children, but the industry insists they're safe.

Cigarette ads are banned, but ads for these are not.

If Thursday’s rule passes, it would immediately make e-cigarettes off limits to kids, but that may not happen anytime soon. This is just a "proposed" rule. The FDA still has to get input from the public, industry, and experts. That sometimes takes a year or more.