Skip Maine state header navigation

Agencies | Online Services | Help

Skip First Level Navigation | Skip All Navigation

Maine's Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarette Law

 

Program Overview
Applicable Statutes
Dates of Implementation
Approved Reduced Ignition Propensity Brands for Maine
Testing Requirements for Certification
Brand Certification Requirements
Packaging Marking Requirements
Violations

Obtaining Approval for Sale of Fire Safe Cigarettes in Maine

Contacts, Resources and Reports

 

 

 

 

 

"There is no substitute for Prevention when a Victim is Intimate with ignition."

USFA, Behavioral Mitigation of Smoking Fires, FA-302/February 2006

 

Program Overview

Fire Standard Compliant Cigarette Program: Provides industry regulation by requiring cigarette manufacturers to certify that a cigarette variety has been tested, and marked in compliance with PL Chapter 253, 22 M.R.S.A § 1555-E "An Act Concerning Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes." The State Fire Marshal's Office will assist them in meeting requirements through technical assistance.


Applicable Statutes

22 M.R.S.A § 1555-E Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes

22 M.R.S.A. § 1580-L Tobacco Product Manufacturers

 


Dates of Implementation

  1. An Act Concerning Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes was signed into law on June 8, 2007 to take effect on January 1, 2008.
  2. In December of 2007 manufactureres began sending to the State Fire Marshal's Office documents attesting to compliance with Maine's Reduced Ignition Propsensity Law and requesting that their cigarette brands be approved for sale in Maine.
  3. In the spring of 2008 the State Fire Marshal's Office began collaborating with the with the Office of the Attorney general to ensure that cigarettes listed by that office in accordance with 22 M.R.S.A.§ 1580-L have also been listed certified as compliant with the Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarette requirements.
  4. In July 2008 the State Fire Marshal's Office began developing a list of all cigarette brands certified as being compliant with the reduced ignition propensity requirements. Upon completion that list will be published on this web page.

Approved Reduced Ignition Propensity Brands for Maine

To check and see if a specific brand name or style is on fire safe certified and on our list please call us at (207) 626 - 3873. The Maine Attorney General will not list a cigararette legal for sale in Maine unless that cigarette brand style has been certified as fire safe. Here is a link to the certification list maintained by the Attorney General.

Brands Approved by the Maine Attorney General

 


Testing Requirements for Certification

  1. Testing of cigarettes must be conducted in accordance with ASTM Standard E2187-04, "Standard Test Method for Measuring the Ignition Strength of Cigarettes.
  2. Testing must be conducted on 10 layers of filter paper.
  3. No more than 25% of the cigarettes tested in a test trial in accordance with this subsection may exhibit full-length burns. Forty replicate tests constitutes a complete test trial for each cigarette tested.
  4. The testing performance standards required may be applied only to a complete test trial.
  5. Written certifications must be based upon testing conducted by a laboratory that has been accredited pursuant to standard ISO/IEC 17025 of the International Organization for Standardization or other comparable accreditation standards required by the State Fire Marshal.
  6. Laboratories conducting testing in accordance with this subsection shall implement a quality control and quality assurance program that includes a procedure that will determine the repeatability of the testing results. The repeatability value must be no greater than 0.19.
  7. This subsection does not require additional testing if cigarettes are tested consistent with this section for any other purpose.
  8. Testing performed or sponsored by the State Fire Marshal to determine a cigarette's compliance with the performance standards required must be conducted these testing requirements.

Each cigarette listed in a certification submitted pursuant to subsection 3 that uses lowered permeability bands in the cigarette paper to achieve compliance with the performance standards set forth in this subsection must have at least 2 nominally identical bands on the paper surrounding the tobacco column. At least one complete band must be located at least 15 millimeters from the lighting end of the cigarette. For cigarettes on which the bands are positioned by design, there must be at least 2 bands located at least 15 millimeters from the lighting end and 10 millimeters from the filter end of the tobacco column or 10 millimeters from the labeled end of the tobacco column for nonfiltered cigarettes.

The following provisions apply to alternative test methods.

(1) A manufacturer of a cigarette that the State Fire Marshal determines cannot be tested in accordance with the test methods prescribed in paragraph A shall propose test methods and performance standards for the cigarette to the State Fire Marshal. Upon approval of the proposed test methods and a determination by the State Fire Marshal that the performance standards proposed by the manufacturer are equivalent to the performance standards prescribed in paragraph A, the manufacturer may employ the test methods and performance standards to certify the cigarette pursuant to the certification requirements.


(2) If a manufacturer has certified a cigarette pursuant to subsection 3 and thereafter makes any change to the cigarette that is likely to alter its compliance with the reduced ignition propensity standards required by this section, that cigarette may not be sold or offered for sale in this State until the manufacturer retests the cigarette in accordance with the testing standards set forth in this subsection and maintains records of that retesting as required by this subsection. Any altered cigarette that does not meet the performance standards set forth in this subsection may not be sold in this State.


(3) If the State Fire Marshal determines that another state has enacted reduced ignition propensity standards that include test methods and performance standards that are the same as those contained in this subsection and finds that the officials responsible for implementing those requirements have approved the proposed alternative test methods and performance standards for a particular cigarette proposed by a manufacturer as meeting the fire safety standards of that state's law or regulation, then the State Fire Marshal shall authorize that manufacturer to employ the alternative test methods and performance standards to certify that cigarette for sale in this State, unless the State Fire Marshal finds a reasonable basis that the alternative test should not be accepted under this section. All other applicable requirements of this subsection apply to the manufacturer.

Each manufacturer shall maintain copies of the reports of all tests conducted on all cigarettes offered for sale for a period of 3 years and shall make copies of these reports available to the State Fire Marshal and the Attorney General upon written request. Any manufacturer who fails to make copies of these reports available within 60 days of receiving a written request commits a civil violation for which a fine not to exceed $5,000 must be applied for each day after the 60th day that the manufacturer does not make such copies available.

The State Fire Marshal may adopt a subsequent ASTM standard test method for measuring the ignition strength of cigarettes upon a finding that the subsequent method does not result in a change in the percentage of full-length burns exhibited by any tested cigarette when compared to the percentage of full-length burns the same cigarette would exhibit when tested in accordance with ASTM Standard E2187-04.

 


Brand Certification Requirements

Each manufacturer shall submit to the State Fire Marshal a written certification attesting that:

(1) Each cigarette listed in the certification has been tested in accordance with the required testing methods; and

(2) Each cigarette listed in the certification meets the reequired performance standards.

Information listed in the certification of each cigarette must include;

(1) Brand or trade name on the package;

(2) Style, such as light or ultra light;

(3) Length in millimeters;

(4) Circumference in millimeters;

(5) Flavor, such as menthol, if applicable;

(6) Filter or nonfilter;

(7) Package description, such as soft pack or box;

(8) Marking approved in accordance with marking requirements listed below;

(9) The name, address and telephone number of the laboratory, if different than the
manufacturer, that conducted the test; and

(10) The date that the testing occurred.

The manufacturer must make a certification available to the Attorney General for purposes
consistent with this section and the State Tax Assessor for the purposes of ensuring compliance with
this section.

Each cigarette certified must be recertified every 3 years.


Packaging Marking Requirements

The packaging of cigarettes that are certified by a manufacturer in accordance with the certification and testing requirement of Maine's Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarette law must be marked in 8-point or larger type and consist of:

(1) Modification of the universal product code to include a visible mark printed in the area of
the universal product code. This mark may consist of an alphanumeric or symbolic character
or characters permanently stamped, engraved, embossed or printed in conjunction with the
universal product code; or

(2) Any visible combination of alphanumeric or symbolic characters or text permanently
stamped, engraved or embossed upon the cigarette package or cellophane wrap.

A manufacturer shall use only one marking and shall apply this marking uniformly for all packages, including, but not limited to, packs, cartons and cases, and brands marketed by that manufacturer.

Prior to the certification of any cigarette, a manufacturer shall present its proposed marking to the State Fire Marshal for approval. Upon receipt of the request, the State Fire Marshal shall approve or disapprove the marking offered, except that the State Fire Marshal shall approve any marking in use and approved for sale in New York pursuant to the New York Fire Safety Standards for Cigarettes. Proposed markings are deemed approved if the State Fire Marshal fails to act within 10 business days of receiving a request for approval. The State Fire Marshal shall notify the State Tax Assessor as to the marking that has been approved.

A manufacturer may not modify its approved marking unless the modification has been approved by the State Fire Marshal in accordance with the marking requirements herein.

A manufacturer certifying cigarettes in accordance with the certification requirements shall provide a copy of the certification to all distributors and agents to which the manufacturer sells cigarettes and shall also provide sufficient copies of an illustration of the package marking used by the manufacturer pursuant to this section for each tobacco retailer to which the distributors or agents sell cigarettes. Distributors and agents shall provide copies of these illustrations to all tobacco retailers to which they sell cigarettes. Distributors, agents and tobacco retailers shall permit the State Fire Marshal, the State Tax Assessor, the Attorney General and their employees to inspect cigarette packaging marked in accordance with this subsection.


Violations

  1. A manufacturer, distributor, agent or any other person or entity who knowingly sells or offers to sell cigarettes, other than through retail sale, in violation of subsection 2, paragraph A commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $10,000 per each sale of cigarettes must be imposed.
  2. A manufacturer, distributor, agent or any other person or entity who knowingly sells or offers to sell cigarettes, other than through retail sale, in violation of subsection 2, paragraph A and has previously been adjudicated of violating that subsection commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $25,000 per each sale of cigarettes must be imposed, except that the fine against any one person or entity may not exceed $100,000 during any 30-day period.
  3. C. A tobacco retailer who knowingly sells 1,000 cigarettes or less in violation of subsection 2, paragraph A commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $500 per each sale or offer for sale of cigarettes must be imposed.
  4. A tobacco retailer who commits a violation as described in paragraph C and has previously been adjudicated of committing that violation commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $2,000 per each sale or offer for sale of cigarettes must be imposed.
  5. A tobacco retailer who knowingly sells more than 1,000 cigarettes in violation of subsection 2, paragraph A commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $1,000 per each sale or offer for sale of cigarettes must be imposed, except that this fine against any tobacco retailer may not exceed $25,000 during a 30-day period.
  6. A tobacco retailer who commits a violation as described in paragraph E and has previously been adjudicated of committing that violation commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $5,000 per each sale or offer for sale of cigarettes must be imposed, except that this fine against any tobacco retailer may not exceed $25,000 during a 30-day period.
  7. In addition to any other penalty prescribed by law, a corporation, partnership, sole proprietor, limited partnership or association engaged in the manufacture of cigarettes that knowingly makes a false certification pursuant to subsection 3 commits a civil violation for which a fine of not less than $75,000 must be imposed for each false certification.
  8. A corporation, partnership, sole proprietor, limited partnership or association engaged in the manufacture of cigarettes that commits a violation as described in paragraph G after having previously being adjudicated of committing that violation commits a civil violation for which a fine of at least $75,000 and not more than $250,000 must be imposed for each false certification.
  9. A person who commits a violation of a provision of this section other than those described in paragraphs A to H commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $1,000 must be imposed for each violation.
  10. A person who commits a violation as described in paragraph I and has been previously adjudicated of committing a violation described in paragraph I commits a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $5,000 must be imposed for each violation.

 

Obtaining Approval for Sale of Fire Safe Cigarettes in Maine

To obtain approval for sale of cigarettes in Maine the following information must be submitted:

  • A cover letter identifying the cigarette manufacturer and the contact person for the manufacturer.
  • Written certification attesting that each cigarette has been tested in accordance with and has met the performance requirement of ASTM E2187-04 including those standards listed under 22 M.R.S.A. 1553-E §§ 2.
  • The description of each cigarette listed in the certification must include the brand, style, length in millimeters, circumference in millimeters, flavor, filter or nonfilter, package description and the packaging marking approved under 22 M.R.S.A. 1553-E §§ 4, the name, address, and phone number the laboratory that conducted the testing (if different than the manufacturer), and the date the testing was conducted.
  • A copy of the marking approval from the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control.
  • Sample packs or cartons, or copies, clearly showing the proposed marking.

 

Contacts

Manufacturers seeking to certify their cigarette brands shall submit all certification, testing, and marking documents to:

Vacant

(or)

Charlene P. Giroux
Office of the State Fire Marshal
52 State House Station
Augusta, Maine 04333
(207) 626- 3874
e-mail: Charlene.P.Giroux@maine.gov

 

Resources and Reports

2009 Report to the Legislature on Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes in Maine

NFPA Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes

USFA "Behaviroral Mitigation of Smoking Fires" Report

Fire Safe Cigarettes Study: The Effect Of The New York State Cigarette Fire Safety Standard On Ignition Propensity,
Smoke Toxicity, And The Consumer Market (Report from the Havard School of Public Health)