Winchester civic chiefs are calling for a ban on the sale of disposable vapes. 

Recent data shows that the number of 11-18 year olds using vapes increased from four per cent in 2021 to 8.6 percent in 2022.

Cllr James Batho proposed the motion at the full meeting of Winchester City Council. 

He said: “Since September, Hampshire County Council Trading Standards Service have seized over 10,500 illegal vapes, with a retail value estimated at £153,674 and in one instance over £40,000 of stock was removed from a single shop.

“The marketing of certain vaping products is concerning with bright coloured packaging and flavours such as bubble-gum that might appeal to children.

“There has been a significant increase in the availability of disposable and single-use vaping products which are cheaper and easier for children to access and a major source of littering. 

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Hampshire Chronicle: Cllr James Batho

“The role vaping products play in aiding adults to stop smoking, and that vaping products carry a small fraction of the risk and exposure to toxins that are associated with cigarettes. However, vaping is not risk-free; particularly for those who have never smoked. Vaping products contain nicotine and research shows that most children who use them have never smoked.

“In October the Government announced an open consultation on creating a smoke-free generation and tackling youth vaping.

“The council believes that disposable vapes are an inherently unsustainable product, meaning an outright ban remains the most effective solution to this problem.”

Cllr Batho's motion supports the Local Government Association's call for a ban on the sale and manufacture of disposable vapes by the end of next year and that disposable vaping products be regulated in a similar way as other single-use items, such as bans on plastic straws.

Also the council leader, Martin Tod, will write to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to express support for the banning of disposable vaping products. The council will also respond to any future consultation on the banning of the sale and manufacture of disposable vaping products by supporting such a ban.

Cllr Kelsie Learney said: “I take a strong interest in young people and their health. Vapes are far too cheap and easy to get hold of. We have to take a handle on this.”

The motion was supported by 29 councillors with four abstentions.