New cigarette law takes effect Thursday - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

New cigarette law takes effect Thursday

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -- A law requiring the sale of new cigarettes that are less likely to start fires goes into effect Jan. 1.

State fire officials say they hope the cigarettes will reduce the number of fire deaths in Iowa.

So far in 2008, ten people have died in fires caused by careless smoking. That's twice as many than in 2007.

The tobacco in "fire-safe" cigarettes is wrapped with two or three thin bands of less-porous paper that helps extinguish itself. Similar laws are in effect in at least 21 other states.

Julie Alexander, manager of a Tobacco Outlet Plus store in Des Moines, says 95 percent of her store's stock is "fire-safe" cigarettes.

But Alexander says customers complain that the cigarettes are harder to smoke and taste differently.

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