Call for safer burning cigarettes

IPSWICH firefighters are today backing calls to introduce safer burning cigarettes.The Suffolk firefighters will meet Suffolk Euro MP Richard Howitt at Prince Street fire station in Ipswich today to discuss how the “safer cigarettes” can prevent accidental fires.

IPSWICH firefighters are today backing calls to introduce safer burning cigarettes.

The Suffolk firefighters will meet Suffolk Euro MP Richard Howitt at Prince Street fire station in Ipswich today to discuss how the “safer cigarettes” can prevent accidental fires.

The visit comes ahead of crucial talks in Brussels next month which could see the introduction in 2009 of cigarettes which self-extinguish when left unattended.

The cigarettes, which are already law in Canada and many US states, would stop two-thirds of all UK cigarette-related fires, reducing related fire deaths from 123 to 45.

Labour's Richard Howitt MEP said: “I've spoken to firefighters who have pulled badly burnt children out of house fires caused by cigarettes.

“They tell me this change is desperately needed and I agree with them 100 per cent.

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“It's a simple alteration to the manufacture of cigarettes which will save hundreds of lives. The tobacco industry is against it, but the UK government and the EU want to see it happen. It's great that firefighters on the ground are championing this issue - they are the experts and I'm backing them

“Bootleg cigarettes from overseas are so prevalent in the UK that the only effective action can be taken at a European level, making sure all countries make these changes. This change will save lives in Ipswich and Suffolk and I'm proud to support it.”

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