Four Big Tobacco companies court ordered to pay for ads about ci - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Four Big Tobacco companies court ordered to pay for ads about cigarette health risks

Posted: Updated:

YAKIMA, WA - If you're watching T.V. on Sunday night, there's going to be a commercial millions of Americans have not seen in decades. Tobacco companies are running an ad in prime time.

Commercials are all about promoting a product or service, but the tobacco ad that will start airing on Sunday night is anything but. It will tell Americans point blank how deadly cigarettes are.

"R.J Reynolds Tobacco, Phillip Morris USA, Altria, and Lorillard intentionally designed cigarettes to make them more addictive," a commercial says.

The commercial comes 11 years after the Justice Department won a lawsuit against Big Tobacco, saying the industry deceived the American public. A federal court ordered four Big Tobacco companies to make statements about designing cigarettes to enhance the delivery of nicotine.

"Cigarette companies control the impact and delivery of nicotine in many ways, including designing filters and selecting cigarette paper to maximize the ingestion of nicotine, adding ammonia to make the cigarette taste less harsh, and controlling the physical and chemical make-up of the tobacco blend," says a commercial.

Other ads detail the health effects from smoking and the dangers of secondhand smoke. R.J Reynolds Tobacco, Phillip Morris USA, Altria, and Lorillard are also admitting that when people smoke, nicotine actually changes the brain, which makes the struggle to quit smoking so hard to do.

According to the CDC, about 1 in 5 U.S. adults use some form of tobacco product.

Under the court order, these four major tobacco companies are the ones paying for the commercials to run.

HD DOPPLER 6i
/