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Navy banning e-cigarettes on ships, subs, aircraft & more

Fleet commanders implementing new policy citing safety reasons

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Navy announced today it will ban the use, possession, storage and charging of e-cigarettes aboard ships, submarines, aircraft, boats, craft and heavy equipment. The prohibition will be effective in 30 days, on May 14, and will remain in effect until a final determination can be made following a thorough analysis.

The ban of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, or ENDS, applies to Sailors, Marines, Military Sealift Command civilians and any personnel working on or visiting those units.

Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces and Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet released a joint message today saying they are implementing this policy to protect the safety and welfare of Sailors and to protect the ships, submarines, aircraft and equipment.

This new policy is in response to continued reports of explosions of ENDS due to the overheating of lithium-ion batteries. Multiple Sailors have suffered serious injuries from these devices, to include first- and second-degree burns and facial disfigurement. In these cases, injuries resulted from battery explosions during ENDS use, charging, replacement or inadvertent contact with a metal object while transporting.

The Navy says deployed units may request extensions on device removal until their next port visit. Supervisors should ensure that removable lithium-ion batteries are removed from the units and stored according to the ENDS manufacturer instructions, in plastic wrap, in a plastic bag or any other non-conductive storage container.

Sailors on shore will still be allowed to use ENDS on base, but must do so in designated smoking areas ashore while on military installations.

Sailors are encouraged to use available tobacco cessation resources and programs offered through Navy medical services and Navy Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention (NADAP) programs.

For more information, see ALFLTFORCOM/ALPACFLT 141300Z APR 17.