|Shops face prosecution after reports of underage e-cig sales
Three local shops could face prosecution after complaints of underage e-cigarette sales from members of the public.
Wigan Council’s Trading Standards team conducted underage test purchases of e-cigarette liquids using a 15 year old volunteer, where three out of the five shops visited sold to the volunteer.
The shops in Wigan Town Centre and Hindley sold the volunteer various fruit flavoured nicotine e-liquids on each visit.
The shop owners as well as sales staff who sold to our volunteer are currently being interviewed as part of a criminal investigation and if prosecuted each person could face a fine of up to £2,500.
Councillor Kevin Anderson, Wigan Council’s cabinet member for environment, said: “We work with retailers right across the borough to provide advice and support, however we will continue to conduct test purchasing to ensure children are not being illegally sold these products. We will also continue to take enforcement action where appropriate.”
Professor Kate Ardern, director of Public Health, said: “Locally we remain cautious in relation to electronic cigarettes due to the current lack of medium and long-term evidence, so the fact that three out of five local shops sold electronic cigarette liquid to someone under the age of 18 is very concerning.
“Electronic cigarette liquid can contain nicotine which is highly addictive and not something we would want young people or non-smokers to use. We would encourage smokers who want to quit to contact Healthy Routes who will be able to offer advice, guidance and products such as nicotine replacement therapy.”
To report underage sales please contact our Trading Standards team on 01942 827476 or firstname.lastname@example.org.